Alex Corretja has placed Carlos Alcaraz, his young compatriot, among the favourites to win the French Open this year. With his first Masters 1000 title, the newly crowned Miami Open champion has risen to 11th in the ATP rankings. Former world number two Corretja believes 18-year-old Alcaraz has a chance to win Roland Garros for the first time, as he did in 1998 and 2001.
“Alcaraz has got a real shot of winning Roland Garros, for sure,” the former world no. 2 said. “He is going to be among the top three or four players to win the tournament. We need to see how the clay season goes, but definitely, right now, nobody likes to play against him, because you know that you will suffer.”
“You see a guy that is flying on the court, he hits the ball hard, he defends well, and of course, you see that he is going to fight until the end,” Corretja added.
Carlos Alcaraz won the Miami Open on Sunday for the first time in his career on the ATP Tour. The Spaniard won his first ATP Masters 1000 title and third tour-level title in the final at Hard Rock Stadium, defeating sixth seed Casper Ruud 7-5, 6-4. Alcaraz is the youngest Miami men’s champion in the event’s 37-year history, as well as the third-youngest ATP Masters 1000 champion overall, with 283 tournaments under his belt dating back to 1990. He is the first Spanish champion at the tournament, and his victory will propel him to a career-high ATP Ranking of No. 11 in the world.
Only Michael Chang (Toronto 1990) and Rafael Nadal (2005 Monte Carlo) were younger than Alcaraz when they won their first ATP Masters 1000 titles at the age of 18 years and 333 days. Alcaraz took over as the youngest Miami champion from Novak Djokovic, who won in 2007 at the age of 19, when Alcaraz was three years old.