Alcaraz (and Sinner) close to Djokovic: is it right to talk about new Big 3?

jannik Sinner is the tennis player closest to Alcaraz. At this moment, we can talk about a duopoly, as I don't see Rune at the same level as Alcaraz, nor Sinner.

by Lorenzo Ciotti
Alcaraz (and Sinner) close to Djokovic: is it right to talk about new Big 3?
© Cameron Spencer / Staff Getty Images Sport

Match after match, Carlos Alcaraz is breaking down numbers and statistics, records and data. The 20-year-old Spaniard is showing solid, high-performance tennis at the Australian Open 2024. For the first time in his career the Spaniard passed the 3rd round and, subsequently, the 4th round, qualifying for the quarterfinals of the Australian Major.

With this result, Carlitos managed to achieve the goal of reaching the quarterfinals in all Grand Slam events. In 2022 he was able to push himself to the Roland Garros and the US Open. The New York Major was crowned with the victory of the title. In 2023 came the other incredible and unforgettable victory at Wimbledon. Now, in Australia, the quarter-final has arrived which has completed this milestone.

Only three players in their career preceded Alcaraz in achieving this goal. The youngest in history was the German legend Boris Becker at 18 years and 9 months, followed by the Spanish champion Rafael Nadal (20 years and 7 months).

Alcaraz© Phil Walter / Staff Getty Images Sport

On the 3rd place, with a difference of just one month, there's Novak Djokovic (20 years and 8 months), who, for a matter of days is ahead of the world number 2 in this particular and interesting ranking.

However, Alcaraz doesn't want to settle in Melbourne: on Wednesday he will try to gain a pass for the semi-finals by challenging Alexander Zverev. In the semi-final they should then meet the Russian number 3 in the world Daniil Medvedev.

How much is this data worth for Alcaraz?

This goal is worth a lot for the young Spaniard. As I said, only three players have reached this milestone before him, and they are three tennis legends.

Furthermore, Djokovic and Nadal are two of the three tennis players (with Roger Federer - ed.) who have reached or exceeded 20 Slams. The young Spaniard is, in this case, the best at the time of his generation. And, again considering the current moment, it is not even right to talk about new Big 3.

Alcaraz is a step ahead of Jannik Sinner and, above all, of Holger Rune. And simple too. Alcaraz: quarter-finals at the Australian Open, semifinal at Roland Garros and victory at Wimbledon and US Open. Jannik Sinner is further away. Quarter-finals at the Australian Open, the Roland Garros and the US Open, semi-final at Wimbledon.

The comparison is even more merciless with Rune, who reached the quarterfinals at Roland Garros and Wimbledon, 4th round at the Australian Open and 3rd round at the US Open.

Rune is the same age as Alcaraz, Sinner is two years older. The Italian and the Dane have not yet made the definitive leap in quality that Carlitos has already made. This is why the data, numbers and records that the young Spaniard is breaking have greater value. This translated: Alcaraz has proven to be the only one who is closer to the Big 3, which is why we can't talk about a new big three yet.

Sinner is the tennis player closest to Alcaraz. At this moment, we can talk about a duopoly, as I don't see Rune at the same level as Alcaraz, nor Sinner.

Sinner and Rune
Sinner and Rune© Clive Brunskill / Staff Getty Images Sport

In the post-match interview, the young Spanish talent revealed that he was experiencing the same sensations he felt at Wimbledon. A warning, for his rivals.

"Coming here is a great feeling, this tournament is really fantastic. I'm proud of the level I'm playing at, it's going to be a really difficult quarter against Sascha. I hope to at least reach the semi-final, but we'll see what happens in the next match. My gaming level? It's nice to have this neo big match level and every day I play I feel better and better. I arrive at the quarterfinals with a lot of confidence and I hope to take all this as an advantage.

I hope to play even better against Sascha. Here as at Wimbledon? Well, concrete and grass are completely different, but the process is similar if not the same. I didn't think about it, but it's true. Zverev? We are talking about a great tennis player and he has already played great challenges here, I like playing against him and I have to offer my best level to win. I lost last time so I have to improve from that match, I will enjoy the match and hope to win the match," he explained.

Australian Open Alcaraz Jannik Sinner