Born in 1993, Aslan Karatsev needed almost 300 Challenger and Futures matches to show his full potential and make a name for himself! Aslan was ranked outside the top-250 when the season restarted last August, reaching three consecutive Challenger finals and winning back-to-back titles to move closer to the top-100.
Aslan qualified for the Australian Open at the beginning of the current season and scored incredible victories to reach the last four, writing history as the first qualifier in a Major semi-final! A month later, Karatsev lifted the first ATP title in Dubai to gain more boost and improve his ranking to find himself in the top-30, passing over 200 rivals on the ATP list in seven months.
After early exits in Miami and Monte Carlo, Aslan reached the second ATP final in Belgrade following a stunning victory over world no.1 Novak Djokovic in just under three and a half hours. Karatsev lost the title match to Matteo Berrettini in the deciding tie break, switching focus to Madrid Open and making a winning start against Ugo Humbert.
In a recent interview, Aslan spoke about his favorite players, mentioning Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras as the players he watched while making the first tennis steps. When they retired, Aslan found a new idol in Roger Federer, enjoying watching his matches and admiring Roger's unique skills and longevity.
Aslan Karatsev praises Roger Federer, his movement, skills and longevity.
For Karatsev, Federer is an incredible mover for someone who turns 40 soon, praising the Swiss for his desire to extend his tennis journey despite the recent setbacks and wishing to compete against him.
Federer suffered a severe knee injury at the beginning of the last season, undergoing two surgeries and skipping almost the entire year. The 20-time Major winner returned to the court two months ago in Doha, winning one match and hoping for more in Geneva and Paris in the upcoming weeks.
"I like Agassi, Sampras. When they left, I watched Roger Federer. The game that he produces can't be compared with anything. It's not that he remains an idol; I would like to play against him. Since childhood, I have looked at him, watching him performing; that's why I would love to face him.
It's phenomenal that he's playing at 39. I don't know how he keeps himself in such physical shape; it's a rarity. It's exceptional to move like that at almost 40," Aslan Karatsev said.