Carlos Alcaraz hopes to emulate ‘Rafa, Djokovic and Federer rivalry’
Carlos Alcaraz has revealed that he wants to have a rivalry with Jannik Sinner that matches that of Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer.
Alcaraz had to miss the first clay Masters 1000 event of the year in Monte Carlo, due to post-traumatic arthritis in his left hand and muscular discomfort in his spine, but is returning to defend his title in Barcelona.
Meanwhile in Barcelona ☀️
A very happy @carlosalcaraz is back on the clay! pic.twitter.com/zAGbpUd3U0
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) April 15, 2023
The 19-year-old is returning to the tour, however his compatriot Nadal has revealed that he is ‘not ready’ and Alcaraz commented on this, “I’m a tennis player but I’m also a tennis fan and I always want to see the best players at every tournament.”
Alcaraz continued, “With what Rafa has achieved at this tournament [Barcelona Open], it’s a shame not to have him here, not to be able to enjoy his tennis and I wish him a speedy recovery.”
“The absences don’t make me feel like more of a favourite. Every match is huge and every player in the draw can beat me, no problem.I have to stay focused and play my best in every match. I don’t feel like a favourite at all, every match is huge, and I have to play as well as possible.”
Alcaraz won his first Barcelona Open title last year, when he beat fellow Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta on Pista Rafa Nadal, and could face his ‘biggest rival’ Jannik Sinner in the final this year.
However, the top seed claims his main focus is on his first match against either Ilya Ivashka or Nuno Borges, “I’m going to try and avoid that pressure to defend the title. I’m a player who looks at the route to the final, but only briefly. But my focus is on the first round, and it will stay there until I’ve played it.”
However, the US Open champion has relished the idea of having a long rivalry with Sinner, “Whenever we play, I think it’s very fun to watch and they are great matches.”
Alcaraz added, “I hope to have a rivalry with Jannik like the ones between great players like Rafa, Djokovic and Federer. Also, we get on well off-court.”
Carlos Alcaraz vs Jannik Sinner head-to-head
Alcaraz and Sinner have played six times on the main ATP tour, with the Italian picking up the latest win in the rivalry.
Carlos Alcaraz vs Jannik Sinner: 3-3
2021 – Alcaraz beat Sinner, 7-6(1) 7-5 (Paris Masters)
2022 – Sinner beat Alcaraz, 6-1 6-4 6(8)-7 6-3 (Wimbledon)
– Sinner beat Alcaraz, 6(5)-7 6-1 6-1 (Croatia Open – Umag)
– Alcaraz beat Sinner, 6-3 6(7)-7 6(0)-7 7-5 6-3 (US Open)
2023 – Alcaraz beat Sinner, 7-6(4) 6-3 (Indian Wells)
– Sinner beat Alcaraz, 6(4)-7 6-4 6-2 (Miami Open)
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