Former world No. 1 Yevgeny Kafelnikov called Spanish tennis fans "lucky" as he believes Carlos Alcaraz is the new Rafael Nadal. Kafelnikov was impressed by the performance Alcaraz delivered in the Miami final as he took to social media to express how he feels about the 18-year-old.
"Spanish tennis fans are so lucky! When they thought that there will never again be a player like Rafa again (who would be number 1 and win slams on regular basis) when he retires, Carlos Alcaraz steps in to feel that void!" Kafelnikov tweeted.
On Sunday, Alcaraz handed Casper Ruud a 7-5 6-4 loss in the Miami final to win his first Masters title.
Spanish tennis fans are so luckyð! When they thought that they’ll be no more Rafa like player(who would be number 1 and win slams on regular bases) when he retires,Carlos Alcaraz steps in to feel that void!!
Lucky bastardsð¤ª — Kafelnikov Yevgeny (@KYevgeni) April 3, 2022
Kafelnikov: Only Nadal can stop Alcaraz, maybe not even him
"There is only one man right now (maybe not even him) who can beat Alcaraz on red clay!
Don’t even try to argue with me on this topic," Kafelnikov said in another tweet.
In Indian Wells, Alcaraz fell just short of becoming the first player to beat Nadal in 2022.
There is only one man right now (maybe not even him) who can beat Alcaraz on red clay! Don’t even try to argue with me on this topicð — Kafelnikov Yevgeny (@KYevgeni) April 3, 2022
After suriving a three-setter against Alcaraz in the Indian Wells semifinal, Nadal spoke extremely highly of Alcaraz. “I think he has all the shots,” said Nadal after beating Alcaraz. “He can play very aggressive.
He can play defensive because he's super fast. He can defend amazing balls. Of course, when he's playing aggressive, it is difficult to stop him because the quality of his ball is very high. “I think he has all the ingredients to become an amazing champion.
I didn't come to the match more nervous because I was playing a youngster. I treated it like I was playing against a top-eight player. In terms of level, that was my feeling”. Following his victory in Miami, Alcaraz rose to a career-high ranking of No. 11 in the world. Alcaraz is now a Masters champion and on the verge of breaking into the top-10.