Carlos Alcaraz - Roland Garros 2022

Carlos Alcaraz ‘thinks’ he could beat Rafael Nadal at Roland Garros

Carlos Alcaraz has claimed that he could beat Rafael Nadal at Roland Garros, despite the 22-time Grand Slam champion only losing three out of 115 matches at the Paris major.

Alcaraz is currently attempting to defend his Madrid Open title, where Nadal is once again absent due to his psoas injury not recovering in the way that it was supposed to.

While the 19-year-old was full of praise for his fellow Spaniard, he backed himself to go toe-to-toe with ‘one of the best in history’.

“I have always said that I like to play against the best and Nadal is one of the best in history, there is no doubt about that,” said Alcaraz.

He continued, “His tournament is Roland-Garros, he has the most titles, but this is the most symbolic for him. I would love to play him at Roland-Garros, measure myself against him and see what happens. I think I could beat him, but Rafa has a thousand lives there.”

“It is almost impossible to win any tournament 14 times even if it is an [ATP] 250 [event]. But let’s try, in life you have to challenge yourself, hopefully I can be like Rafa in that.”

Alcaraz continued to speak about the traits of Nadal that he admires and hopes to possess himself, “I am inspired by the courage and the winning gene that he [Nadal] has inside himself. Especially that rage that he has on the court of wanting to win and doing everything possible to win. To never quit, to never give up and go for everything.”

“For me, mentally he is an example and he is also in other areas. No matter how many problems come up, he always provides solutions and never makes excuses.”

Alcaraz added, “He has experienced many games in which he has been dead and he has known how to turn it around. And that is not easy at all, staying mentally strong to find solutions. It is something that I would like to take from Rafa, the ability that he has to adapt to any situation.”

Carlos Alcaraz vs Rafael Nadal head-to-head

Alcaraz and Nadal have played on three occasions, with two of their meetings coming on the clay in the Spanish capital.

Here is the head-to-head so far:

Carlos Alcaraz vs Rafael Nadal: 1-2

  1. Nadal beat Alcaraz, 6-1 6-2 (Madrid Open 2021)
  2. Nadal beat Alcaraz, 6-4 4-6 6-3 (Indian Wells 2022)
  3. Alcaraz beat Nadal, 6-2 1-6 6-3 (Madrid Open 2022)

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Matthew Johns, Tennishead Writer, is a professional tennis journalist with a specialist degree in Sports Journalism. He's a keen tennis player having represented his local club and University plus he's also a qualified tennis coach. Matthew has a deep knowledge of tennis especially the ATP Tour and thrives on breaking big tennis news stories for Tennishead.