Carlos Alcaraz won the Challenger of Trieste, thus repeating the feat of Rafael Nadal that his first ATP center always won him in the boot and always on the ground, but in that of Barletta. It was April 2003, Alcaraz would be born 36 days after the final of a tournament that in Puglia remember very well.
And who knows, in 17 years we won't be able to follow the same path backwards, remembering that time when a young Alcaraz lined up everyone in Friuli. The juxtaposition between the protégé of Juan Carlos Ferrero and the winner of 19 Grand Slam titles is almost a duty, given the common flag and the precocity in the approach to tennis that counts.
Juan Carlos Ferrero says comparisons between Carlos Alcaraz and Rafael Nadal are inevitable, but he is much more similar to Roger Federer.
Ferrero on Carlos Alcaraz
“It is difficult to compare [anyone] to Roger Federer of course but if I had to say one name [in comparison to Carlos], I’m looking for somebody that is very aggressive and is able to do a lot of things on the court, and Roger is the best in these situations,” coach Juan Carlos Ferrero told of Carlos Alcaraz.
“He can play on any surface and can play any type of style”. Ferrero added that Alcaraz came to his attention at a very young age and stood out immediately. “We have a lot of tournaments for the young kids and he was playing for Spain in a tournament here.
He was a little bit different from the players around him because he was able to do a lot of things on the court that at the age of 12, it’s not very usual to see somebody do. He would maybe chip-and-charge or go to the net very often to finish the point.
He could play with a lot of spin or play flat depending on the situation on the court”. And yet Ferrero still asks for more on the physical side. When questions are asked in press bars and locker rooms about why the next generation have repeatedly failed to depose the existing powers of Federer, Nadal and Novak Djokovic, constant intensity is what is mentioned.
Like a boxer who will spar four men in a row, the elite players are famous for the relentlessness of every training session. Alcaraz appears to have some of that in his mentality already, and his body is starting to catch up.