Tennis: star Alcaraz wants to provoke Rothenbaum – Sport

Status: 18.07.2022 08:58

19-yr-previous Carlos Alcaraz is already ranked sixth on the planet. Why his Spanish compatriot Rafael Nadal describes “Carlchen” because the reward of tennis, the sky ahead will need to show in his debut at Rothenbaum.

by Andreas Bellinger

He likes to giggle – and quite a bit. One would suppose that he laughs off the compliments that observe him day-after-day. Why ought to Carlos Alcaraz care when he is already been in contrast to world stars like 22-time Grand Slam winner Rafael Nadal and is properly on his means to main the sector at simply 19 years previous? “I push the stress apart – at the least I attempt,” says the younger man, uncomfortable at such moments, however in a barely clumsy international English.

AUDIO: Tennis Talk: Andrea Petkovic and Sandra Reichel (11 min)

As on this week’s match at Rothenbaum, the highest-seeded Spaniard is greater than able to including his identify to the lengthy record of compatriots who’ve received the clay courtroom basic. This yr’s participant of the yr has misplaced solely two of his 22 matches. Therefore, one of the best prospects to obtain the purpose of successful the match on the premiere in Hamburg.

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Tennis player Andrea Petkovic during the tournament at Rothenbaum in Hamburg on July 18, 2022 © Witters WIL_8527 Photo: Leoni Horki

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Bold, aggressive and exhausting hitting

“I’m in an excellent temper, I really feel good, but it surely’s not straightforward to go from the grass at Wimbledon to the sand right here,” mentioned the “heaven striker” who’s about to flip the world of tennis the wrong way up. . The final cease within the Round of 16 was on the Sacred Lawn in Wimbledon. Played as a mixed ladies’s and males’s occasion for the primary time in 44 years, the European Open in Hamburg expects to “explode” the appropriate-handed and generally two-handed groundstrokes she is aware of how to play. play very dangerously.

“I need to be daring and aggressive,” he says in an interview on the facility on Gallerstrasse. Waiting and simply returning balls defensively over the online shouldn’t be his factor. “If I lose, it isn’t as a result of I’m too passive.”

Big reward from function mannequin Nadal

The indisputable fact that Rafael Nadal is his confirmed function mannequin isn’t any shock for the tennis participant who was born on May 5, 2003 within the small village of El Palmar close to Murcia within the southeast of the Iberian Peninsula and has been knowledgeable tennis participant since 2018. “Carlitos”, as Nadal generally nonetheless calls the 1.85m athlete, means “Carlchen”.

No drawback for Alcaraz, in fact, who laughs heartily when requested about it. The 36-yr-previous clay-courtroom king from Manacor, Majorca, who received his 14th French Open, is stuffed with reward, telling Tennis Magazine: “He’s not the way forward for tennis, he is the current.”

Rothenbaum begins in opposition to Nicola Kuhn

Joining Alcaraz at Rothenbaum is 22-yr-previous Nicola Kuhn from Ludwigshafen, who has performed at Wimbledon however has but to win a match in Hamburg. It would possibly look like a straightforward begin for the elite.

But he nonetheless would not need to take his debut in Hamburg evenly, says the world quantity six, who remains to be ranked 515th in April 2019. Even generally he has to rub his eyes on the successes he doesn’t settle for. “I’m shocked that it is going so properly this season – and most significantly, rapidly.”

The fifth ultimate is the fifth title

It appears that his luck will solely enhance this yr. Tournament victories in Rio de Janeiro (ATP 500) and Miami (Masters 1000), in addition to a semi-ultimate look at Indian Wells (Masters 1000), put him within the high 20 of the world rankings at first of the season. In Miami, he even turned the youngest and first Spanish winner within the historical past of the match.

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DTB president Dietloff von Arnim (left), tournament director Sandra Reichel and organizer Peter-Michael Reichel

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The then 18-yr-previous captured his fourth ATP Tour title and entered the highest ten for the primary time in entrance of his residence crowd in Barcelona. Incidentally, because the youngest participant after Nadal, he achieved this feat by successful the match in Barcelona in 2005.

Back-to-back wins in opposition to Nadal, Djokovic and Zverev

At the Masters in Madrid, Alcaraz received his fifth profession ultimate, defeating Hamburg’s Alexander Zverev, who missed the Rothenbaum this yr due to a severe leg damage. For the sake of completeness, it must also be talked about that he has beforehand defeated Nadal and Novak Djokovic back-to-back.

Ferrero makes Carlitos robust

His coach is former world primary and 2003 French Open winner Juan Carlos Ferrero, who coached Zverev for a number of months. But in accordance to the Spaniard, the chemistry was not proper. Alcaraz trains commonly on the Ferrero Academy, an hour’s drive from his residence in southeastern Spain. According to his coach, he’s additionally hardworking and affected person when it comes to power coaching. And in case you are too drained, a smile will assist.

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Boris Becker kneeling on Center Court in Rothenbaum in 1992.  © picture-alliance / Sven Simon Photo: Sven Simon

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Hamburg Magazine | 18.07.2022 | 19:30

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