ATP Barcelona: Carlos Alcaraz wins title and follows Rafael Nadal's pace

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ATP Barcelona: Carlos Alcaraz wins title and follows Rafael Nadal's pace

An 18-year-old Carlos Alcaraz played another impressive tournament in front of the home fans at the ATP 500 event in Barcelona. A teenager claimed the fourth ATP title and extended his great run in 2022 after winning 23 out of 26 matches!

The Spaniard faced two match points in the semi-final against Alex de Minaur, erasing them and prevailing after three hours and 39 minutes! Preserving energy, the youngster returned to Pista Rafa Nadal a couple of hours later and faced the fellow Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta in the title clash.

Carlos proved to be too strong and delivered a 6-3, 6-2 victory in 65 minutes to lift the fourth ATP crown 11 days before turning 19! With these 500 points, Alcaraz will crack the top-10 on Monday, on the same day and almost at the same age as his rival Rafael Nadal!

Carlos fired 18 winners and ten unforced errors, dropping six points in eight service games and never facing a break point.

Carlos Alcaraz will crack the top-10 on Monday.

Carreno Busta was far from that pace, staying under ten winners and spraying too many mistakes to suffer four breaks and propel the rival through.

Pablo cracked a forehand down the line winner for a hold at love in the encounter's opening game. Feeling fresh despite the challenging semi-final, Carlos landed a forehand down the line winner in game two to get his name on the scoreboard.

Carreno Busta hit a service winner in game three for another hold at love and a comfortable start. Unimpressed, Alcaraz repeated that in game four for 2-2 and seized the second break chance in the next one after the opponent's forehand error.

Carlos fired a forehand winner in game six to confirm the break and open a 4-2 gap in under 20 minutes. Pablo defended five break points in the seventh game to reduce the deficit to 4-3 and remain in touch. Leaving that game behind him, Carlos fired an ace in the eighth game for a hold at love and grabbed a break a few minutes later for 6-3 after 34 minutes.

A teenager closed the second set's first game with a service winner and repeated that at 1-1. Like in the opening set, Pablo stayed in touch in the opening games, securing the fourth with a drop shot winner. Carlos held at 30 in game five and broke in the next one with a deep return that sent him 4-2 in front.

The youngster secured the seventh game with a forehand winner and broke at love in the next one to seal the deal and wrap up another impressive week.