Yesterday the first day of the ATP final phase was played in Turin, with two games in which there were already big surprises. The Norwegian Casper Ruud prevailed against the odds by beating Félix Auger Aliassime, one of the most fit tennis players of the moment, in two sets, while Rafael Nadal fell in the afternoon, defeated in two sets by the American Taylor Fritz.
This defeat could already be decisive in the standings, and the last games have helped Carlos Alcaraz's trajectory. The current number one in the world, a 19-year-old tennis player from Murcia, is getting closer to finishing the season at the top of the Ranking.
The Murcian champion only runs the risk of losing first place in two circumstances. The only ones who can take this supremacy away from him are actually Rafael Nadal and Stefanos Tsitsipas, but both from now on cannot lose games and must win the tournament.
Rafa could afford a loss in the group stage, which happened yesterday, so now he can't make any more missteps. Tsitsipas, meanwhile, has to win all five available matches to finish at the top of the world rankings. Given the situation, Alcaraz is undoubtedly the clear favorite to finish at the top of the ATP rankings.
Behind Casper Ruud he can only become number two, while the others have no chance with Fritz, who can win important points and positions. Among the Italians, Jannik Sinner, Matteo Berrettini and Lorenzo Musetti, who have already finished their season (the last two will have to play the Davis Cup finals), Lorenzo Sonego gains a position, as does the winner of the ATP NextGen Finals Brandon Nakashima, who stabilizes in the Top 50.
Carlos Alcaraz was left mentally and physically drained from a grueling campaign that saw him win the US Open and become No. 1 in the world, according to Alex Corretja. "The US Open effort came with a bill to pay," the former World No.
2 told Eurosport. "You achieve the goal of your life, the dream of being number 1 in the world and winning a Slam. The following weeks are automatically the most difficult to face. He played the Davis Cup right after, and then he went to a tournament far away [in Astana, Kazakhstan], with the long flight and competition time that he had to do."
Arias talks about Alcaraz
Jimmy Arias believes Carlos Alcaraz possesses abilities like no other player, particularly due to his athletic prowess. "His game's pretty good, he's an incredible athlete," Arias said.
"He does things that I haven't seen players do. He can hit a 100-mile-an-hour forehand from 3 feet behind the baseline, and then on the next shot, he's at the net or pretty close to the net. You don't see anybody do that, it's a new thing.
It's impressive to watch. Obviously, he [Carlos Alcaraz] went to the US Open and he's still one of the top favorites at that tournament and it was fine. Now that he's No. 1, he's just going to have to learn to deal with it.
It's different, you're not chasing anyone anymore. Everyone's chasing you, everyone's gunning for you," Arias suggested.