For many tennis fans, seeing Carlos Alcaraz at the top of the ATP rankings was inevitable but nobody expected it real soon, at least not with Djokovic and Nadal still active in the sport, or the hardworking trio of Danil Medvedev, Zverev & Stefano Tsitsipas.
The 19year old has not only gone on to become the world no.1 at an incredible age of 19, he’s also done it in style by winning his maiden grand slam title defeating Norwegian, Casper Ruud — at the US Open.
In 2021, the young Spaniard showed glimpses of his talent but couldn’t do much due to his physique. Still, it was enough to lift his first ATP title in the Croatia Open (ATP 250 event) defeating top seed and clay court specialist, Ramos-Vinolas & Frenchman, Richard Gasquet in the final. He became the youngest Spaniard to win an ATP Tour title since Nadal in Sopot 2004. He ended the year winning the Next gen ATP finals in Milan defeating Hugo Gaston, Juan Cerundolo, Sebastian Korda & Brandon Nakashima.
2022 came in a much improved physical condition and this has been vital in his road to the No.1 position — winning his first ATP 500 title at the Rio Open in February 2022, third title and first ATP tour masters 1000 title at the Miami Open, second ATP 500 at Barcelona Open, second ATP tour masters at the Madrid Open and Maiden Grand Slam title at the US Open.
Style of play: Typically loves to play on clay like his idol, Nadal. Yet, Alcaraz isn’t any bad on hard court. He employs an aggressive baseline style of play, with high winner on his forehand, his most reliable shot. With great technique, Alcaraz has mastered the use of drop shots and heavy hitting of the ball.
Improvement: First serve, which has given him trouble on several occasions in 2022, he’s still found a way to win matches. Still, he’s got to improve if he wants to remain at the most wanted position in ATP ranking.
2022 Nemesis: Jannik Sinner
Despite a successful 2022, Alcaraz will be happy to have edged out current Italian no.1 and 21yr old Janik Sinner, at the US Open in a 5 set thriller.
In July, the Italian got the better of the current world no.1 on grass-slam, Wimbledon and followed it up with another win in UMAG, stopping Carlos Alcaraz from retaining his title.
The pair met again in the QF of the US open and Alcaraz finally got a sweet revenge and first win over his counterpart in 2022.
H2H | 2-1 in favor of JS.
The current world No.1 will be looking forward to the men’s ATP finals in Pala Alpitour, Turin on November 13 to 20, 2022 — where he’ll be battling out with Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Casper Ruud, Stefano Tsitsipas, and 3 other players fighting for the qualification spot.