Carlos Alcaraz Claims US Open Title And Takes Top Spot In ATP World Rankings - Men's Health Magazine Australia

Carlos Alcaraz Claims US Open Title And Takes Top Spot In ATP World Rankings

After long being dominated by the Big Four, the next generation of tennis is finally here with the arrival of 19-year-old Carlos Alcaraz.

At just 19-years-old, Carlos Alcaraz has created the kind of commotion in the tennis world not seen since a young Rafael Nadal first became world No. 1 in 2008 after defeating Roger Federer in a historic Wimbledon final. Up until now, the sport of tennis has been largely dominated by the Big Four – those players known simply by their last name: Nadal, Federer, Djokovic and Murray. Even with age, these players have continued to stun audiences with their athleticism and defensive returns that leave opponents stunned and retreating from the baseline. It takes something remarkable then, to not only topple the great giants of the game but to remain composed enough to take the title of a grand slam and for Alcaraz, his fearless attitude has seen him emerge as the new world No. 1. 

In a thrilling match against Casper Ruud of Norway, Alcaraz closed out the final of the US Open to win the Grand Slam singles title 6-4, 2-6, 7-6 (1), 6-3. As many have been quick to proclaim, it seems the future of tennis has finally arrived and the new era looks set to be one in which Alcaraz makes his mark. 

With nearly 24,000 fans watching the final and $2.6 million in prize money up for grabs, Alcaraz had immense pressure on his shoulders. But in true fashion, he remained only ever composed and present, focusing not on the outcome of the match or the consequences of a win or loss, but rather focusing solely on each point at hand. It’s a remarkable mentality that has seen his star ascension an incredible one to witness. Taking out the match, Alcaraz not only carved his name in sport’s history, but also became the youngest man to win a Grand Slam title since Rafael Nadal won the French Open in 2005 as a 19-year-old. And, in taking out the top ATP ranking, he’s also the youngest man to do so, too. 

As for what makes Alcaraz such a promising star, Matthew Futterman of the New York Times explains it best: “His forehand is powerful, and his ability to chase down balls that other players would not bother trying for is thrilling to watch. He can hit the lustiest of winners when he gets to them, and he takes pure joy from competing, even in the middle of the night. He was wowed crowds everywhere he has played during his first two years as a full-fledged professional, never more so than during the past two weeks of this unforgettable championship run.”

Alcaraz’s fitness is almost unprecedented, as to reach the final of the US Open he played three straight five-set matches that saw him clocking up to 15 hours on the court. In a tournament renowned for producing some of the most epic battles in tennis history that have seen audiences mesmerised into the early hours of the morning, Alcaraz triumphed in a quarterfinal against Jannik Sinner that lasted until 2:50 am – the latest finish in the tournament’s history. 

It’s a rise to the top that has been a joy to witness and it seems certain that Alcaraz will be a name revered within the sporting world for years to come as he only improves an already fault-less game. With the kind of endurance that have made him a player to watch out for, Alcaraz’s future is a bright one. For now though, it’s time for the young star to revel in his accomplishments and in a post-match interview when he was asked if he was finally tired, “A little bit” he admitted. 

By Jessica Campbell

Jess is a storyteller committed to sharing the human stories that lie at the heart of sport.

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