Tim Henman tells Carlos Alcaraz what he must do if he wants to rival Novak Djokovic

Henman shares his thoughts on the Alcaraz-Djokovic rivalry.

by Dzevad Mesic
Tim Henman tells Carlos Alcaraz what he must do if he wants to rival Novak Djokovic
© Getty Images Sport - Clive Mason

Tim Henman acknowledges Carlos Alcaraz is a stunning talent but believes the 20-year-old Spaniard still has "a lot of areas that he can improve" if he wants to fully rival Novak Djokovic. 

After beating Djokovic at the 2022 Madrid Masters, Alcaraz had a very strong start to 2023 and he was considered the favorite going into his French Open semifinal match against the Serb. But early in the third set, Alcaraz experienced full body cramps and he went on to lose in four sets to Djokovic. Around 40 days later, Alcaraz got his revenge as he upset Djokovic in the Wimbledon final for his second Grand Slam title. 

After losing the Wimbledon final, Djokovic won his next two matches against Alcaraz as he beat the Spaniard in the Cincinnati Masters final and in the semifinal at the ATP Finals to improve to 3-2 against the 20-year-old.

Henman thinks Alcaraz must further improve to rival Djokovic

“I mean, Alcaraz had an amazing year, winning his first Wimbledon title. He missed the early part of the year and he still finished No. 2 in the world. He was still in the race to finish No. 1 at the end of the year. He's still so young. He's still learning. You reflect on what happened at Roland Garros in the semi-finals, where after two sets, he suddenly got a terrible cramp. And I'm sure that was from the sort of nervous tension that went with playing that match against Djokovic. So, he's still got a lot of areas that he can improve on.
He's got amazing all-round game, the versatility, but he's still so young. He's another one that just embraces challenges and he loves the competition," Henman told Eurosport.

On December 27th, Alcaraz will take on Djokovic in an exhibition match in Riyadh. The outcome of the match won't mean too much on paper but there is no doubt that both Alcaraz and Djokovic would want to end on the winning side considering their recent history.

Tim Henman Carlos Alcaraz Novak Djokovic