Carlos Alcaraz honestly analyzes fans big expectations on rivalry with Jannik Sinner

The Spaniard talked about the rivalry with the Italian, who could find a new 'episode' of the Wimbledon semifinals

by Lorenzo Ciotti
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Carlos Alcaraz honestly analyzes fans big expectations on rivalry with Jannik Sinner
© Clive Brunskill / Staff - Getty Images Sport

The qualifier Mark Lajal created some headaches for Carlos Alcaraz, in the first round of Wimbledon, but the Spaniard, with some initial difficulty, qualified for the 2nd round of the Championships, where he is defending champion.
Carlitos is the main favorite - together with rival Jannik Sinner and Novak Djokovic - for the final victory of the tournament. A responsibility, that of having to defend the title, that does not weigh on the Spanish champion.

"It makes it even more special. I'm trying not to think about the pressure I have to defend the points or the desire to go far. The difference compared to last year is that I'm more mature. I know how to play on grass, I have more experience on this surface. The whole world wants the semifinal between me and Jannik," he said, in an interview with CNN.

Carlos Alcaraz, Wimbledon 2024
Carlos Alcaraz, Wimbledon 2024© Clive Brunskill / Staff - Getty Images Sport
 

The Spaniard is aware that to repeat last year's success he will have to overcome many opponents of absolute level.
Many are already expecting the possible semifinal against Sinner.

"Everyone wants to see Jannik's match against me in the semifinal and then either Jannik or me play the final against Novak. Everyone wants that, but it's a very long process, a very long road, so we'll see if I can find myself in that position," he added, with a hint of superstition. Alcaraz then projected himself further, daydreaming.

His career goal is only granted to the legends of this sport, but he is on the right path.

"I want to be one of the best ever. I want to sit at the same table as the Big 3, the legends of our sport. To achieve this dream, I want to be surrounded by brands and people who share this with me, who think big. I have achieved great results so far, but it is something I do not want to think about, I am already looking ahead," he told.

Carlos Alcaraz, 2023 Wimbledon
Carlos Alcaraz, 2023 Wimbledon© Clive Brunskill / Staff - Getty Images Sport
 

It took Carlitos a while to take command of the rallies with Lajal, but then asserted his technical supremacy over the Estonian tennis player, who nevertheless performed admirably, in his first appearance on the prestigious courts of the All England Club, as also underlined by the former number one.

In the press conference after his first-round win over the Estonian, he explained: "I'm very happy to be back playing on this wonderful court again. It was really special to win today. I was a bit surprised by the level of my opponent, I think he played fantastically. I'm convinced that if he continues like this, he will quickly climb the rankings. I'm also happy with the level I expressed of course. It's always difficult to start a tournament, the first match is complicated because you have to adapt to the conditions. He played without having anything to lose, the first rounds are not easy at all.

Mark Lajal & Carlos Alcaraz, Wimbledon 2024
Mark Lajal & Carlos Alcaraz, Wimbledon 2024© Clive Brunskill / Staff - Getty Images Sport
 

I hope to continue like this. I really enjoy playing on grass and, specifically, at Wimbledon. It's a surface that allows me to express my style of play at its best. I love playing on grass and I often try to go to the net. Last year I achieved great results. My preference between best-of-three or best-of-five matches? I say five sets. It's always more difficult to beat the great players in best-of-five matches. If I have to choose, I prefer to play best of five, because I feel like I have more opportunities to recover during a match. Even if I'm down two sets, I feel like I still have time to come back."

Speaking of Alcaraz and Sinner and the last challenge, lost in the semifinals against the Spaniard at Roland Garros, the Italian confessed.

"I cried after losing to him at the US Open. A little at Roland Garros too. There are moments when you feel emotions that you don't want to express. In the locker room, when you're in the car for a transfer, or even in the hotel room when you're alone. But that means you care, it means you want to add a certain level. Djokovic? If Novak regains confidence in his body he will be very difficult to beat. Alcaraz won here last year. I also have my chances, just like them, of course, but let's see. All these questions will be answered in the next two weeks."

Carlos Alcaraz Jannik Sinner Wimbledon
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