The participation of the Spanish tennis player Carlos Alcaraz, number 1 in the world, in the next edition of the Argentina Open was a “surprise” for the organizers of the event, according to what former Argentine player Martín Jaite, director of the tournament, acknowledged on Wednesday.
“We always seek to have the best possible and sometimes you have to be a bit lucky. Last week we received this news that Alcaraz could come to Buenos Aires and that made the tournament shine differently,” Jaite said during the presentation ceremony for the competition, which will take place from February 11 to 19.
At first, the representative of Alcaraz, Albert Molina, had ruled out his presence in the Argentina Open, since he had planned to compete in Australia, in the first Grand Slam of the season to defend his world leadership, but an injury in the semimembranous muscle of the right leg changed his plans.
“Last week, Molina called me saying: ‘Martín, there is a possibility that Carlos will come to Buenos Aires’ We quickly agreed (…). Although we were doing very well with sales of sponsorships, tickets and expectations , the fact of having the number 1 in the world generates something else,” Jaite pointed out.
Martín Hughes, executive director and partner of Tennium, the championship organizing company, pointed out, for his part, that bringing the leader of the ATP ranking involved an “enormous effort” at the budget level.
“The fact that Carlitos Alcaraz can come is a huge effort, I say it with total honesty. This is not a business for the company, but it is a better show for the people, because the tournament takes another level,” Hugues said at the presentation event, organized in Buenos Aires.
It has not yet been defined when the Murcian tennis player’s official debut in the competition will be, Jaite pointed out, adding that he will probably play on Wednesday the 15th or Thursday the 16th “at night”.
Corretja opens up on Alcaraz
While Carlos Alcaraz is having a hard time with his withdrawal from the Australian Open due to a muscle injury, Alex Corretja spoke to Eurosport about the possibility that the youngest world number 1 in history will one day exceed in terms of of records and statistics the giants: Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.
The former double finalist of Roland-Garros does not believe it. “It would be a miracle. I don’t think anyone can ever top Djokovic, Federer or Nadal. It’s my opinion. I think he’s going to have an amazing career, but I don’t think he’ll overtake Roger, Rafa or Novak because I consider it mission impossible.”
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