Challenge after challenge. This is how Carlos Alcaraz progresses by leaps and bounds at the Mutua Madrid Open and in his incipient and already brilliant career. On Friday he beat the winner of the 21st Grand Slams, Rafa Nadal. On Saturday, the number one in the world, Novak Djokovic. And this Sunday (18:30, La 1 and #Vamos) will try to overcome for the first time Alexander Zverev, current champion of the tournament and winner also in 2018, whom he has not yet managed to win (0-2).
The challenge for the Spaniard is great, moreover, because the Hamburger has never lost at the Manolo Santana stadium. His balance streak in the tournament is 19-2, but those two losses were on other courts. “It’s my favorite court, the Caja Mágica is the best in the world. I came into the tournament playing poorly, without much confidence, without winning many matches, but this court brings something out of me. This has been Rafa’s track for the last 15 years, and now it’s going to be Carlos’s track for the next 15 years. I hope to cause problems for him and be able to win tomorrow.”
Zverev looks like another. His work ethic has improved a lot, especially since he worked with David Ferrer and now that he is related to Sergi Bruguera, who is now his trainer on a regular basis. On Saturday, and on Sunday, after beating Tsitsipas, he surprised by saying what he was going to do in a game that ended after one in the morning. “Now, I’ll probably go to training when I’m done with the interviews. I’ll do some serves, like yesterday, before going to bed, but I’m happy to do it late, because it means I win and I’m in the final.”Sasha said.
Alcaraz moderately celebrated his victory with his family and his team and concentrated to prepare for the duel that could give him the fifth title of his career, second in a Masters 1,000. They will train before the game, around 1:00 p.m., in the central. With his mind set on breaking down another barrier, against a rival he has not yet been able to overcome. Zverev hallucinates with him: “Nothing has surprised me in these last two days, I know how good he is. In Acapulco last year I said that in 2023 he would be top-10, but he has beaten me by a year. He is an incredible player, at 19 he looks like an adult, he has no limits. Tomorrow I have the toughest opponent of the whole week, that’s why I’m going to continue training.”