Carlos Alcaraz, 18, says he is getting used to the Rafael Nadal comparison but also acknowledged that being compared to an all-time great bring certain pressure as well. Alcaraz is pretty much doing things that Nadal was doing when he was 18 years old.
In Miami, Alcaraz became a Masters champion after beating Casper Ruud in the final. This week, Alcaraz reached a career-high ranking of No. 9 in the world. Just like Nadal, Alcaraz became a Masters champion and broke into the top-10 while 18 years old.
"Little by little, I'm taking it more and more normally and I'm getting better and better. If they compare me to Rafa, it's because I do things well. He is one of the best players in history. Being compared to him is good in a way, but it also adds stones to the backpack.
What I'm trying to do is throw all those rocks they put in mine," Alcaraz said on Spanish talk show El Hormiguero, as quoted on We Love Tennis.
Alcaraz victorious on Pista Rafael Nadal
Last week, Alcaraz captured his first Barcelona title.
The Centre Court in Barcelona was named after Nadal. "I played this tournament (Barcelona), the under 14, and I remember [watching] the matches, the players around the locker room," Alcaraz told Tennis TV. "Players, I mean, Rafa Nadal I saw playing here, [Roberto] Bautista [Agut], [Pablo] Carreno [Busta].
Yeah, I always wished to play in the Rafa Nadal court, to play against the best players of the world. And I remember [saying]: 'One day, one day I will play in there.' " Alcaraz dreamed of playing in Barcelona one day and now he can himself a Barcelona champion.
Last week, Alcaraz dropped a total of five games in the Barcelona final to beat Pablo Carreno Busta 6-3 6-2. After winning Barcelona, Alcaraz is hoping to do the same at the Madrid Masters.