Carlos Alcaraz meets tennis icon Maria Sharapova in Toronto

Alcaraz met Sharapova at this week's National Bank Open.

by Dzevad Mesic
Carlos Alcaraz meets tennis icon Maria Sharapova in Toronto

Carlos Alcaraz met Maria Sharapova at this year's National Bank Open in Toronto. Just like Sharapova, Alcaraz made an astonishing start to his career and very early became a Grand Slam champion and the top-ranked player in the world.

In 2004, a 17-year-old Sharapova became a Grand Slam champion after beating Serena Williams in the Wimbledon final. The following year, Sharapova became the world No 1 for the first time in her career at the age of 18. Last year, Alcaraz was 19 when he became a Grand Slam champion at the US Open and also the top-ranked player in the world.

Alcaraz meets Sharapova, who also won Wimbledon very early

This week in Toronto, Alcaraz is playing his first tournament since winning Wimbledon.

“I have the Wimbledon trophy in my living room, so every time I have lunch or dinner with my family, I see the title. It’s something I don’t want to forget. I only had a week to think about it, it needed a little more because it’s crazy that it’s hard to realize.

For me it is an achievement and it is something that I have to take some time to think about it -- and I still can’t believe it," Alcaraz said. Last year, Alcaraz made his debut at the National Bank Open in Montreal, where he suffered a surprise second-round defeat to Tommy Paul.

This year, Alcaraz believes he will do better. “I remember last year I didn’t have a good tournament in Canada. I have come this year to change it. I hope to go far, do better than last season. A year later, I think I’ve learned a lot from that situation, how to deal with pressure.

I’ve been playing in big stadiums, big games, fighting for big things. I think that helped me a lot to grow as a player, as a person. A year later, I’m totally different," Alcaraz said. In Toronto, Alcaraz is the top-seeded player.

Carlos Alcaraz Maria Sharapova