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    NewsUSAIt's here, it's here: Carlos Alcaraz's big day

    It’s here, it’s here: Carlos Alcaraz’s big day

    Its here, its arrived. The great day that has been predicted for a long time is a reality. There was speculation since he began to leave a trace in youth tournaments with the when, how and where, and the answer to the triple enigma finds an answer on this September 11 in which all eyes, all the lights and the history of tennis (22.00, Eurosport) point directly to Carlos Alcaraz. At 19 years old, the Spanish player is one kidney stroke away from achieving the double dream; that is, to lift his first big trophy and, even more desired by him, to dominate from the top of the circuit. Only the Norwegian Casper Ruud, a first-timer in a New York final, but not in a Grand Slam because he already faced Rafael Nadal in the last Roland Garros, could prevent it.

    “I have always dreamed of being number one. Obviously, getting there without winning a Grand Slam is complicated, but since I was little I have always dreamed of reaching the top”, pointed out the boy from El Palmar after beating Frances Tiafoe in the semifinals in another endurance test (6- 7(6), 6-3, 6-1, 6-7(5) and 6-3), close to a historical record that would underline even more what was guessed and that, in reality, is already a fact: the changing of the guard. With Serena Williams already in her happy retirement, Roger Federer’s career a breath away from being sealed and Nadal’s with questions, because he has them, tennis turns the page and new times are coming.

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    If Alcaraz wins tonight at Flushing Meadows, he will become the youngest tour king in history. Until now, the Australian Lleyton Hewitt, who was 20 years and nine months old when he was crowned on November 19, 2001, has resisted and defended the brand, surpassing the previous record established by the Russian Marat Safin a year earlier. “The truth is that I’m not afraid of this moment, I’m not afraid of the final,” says Alcaraz. “It is something for which I have prepared myself mentally and physically”, he added after beating Tiafoe in five sets, a powerful endorsement with which he presented himself before academic Ruud.

    The Spaniard has chained three marathon victories –before Marin Cilic and Jannik Sinner– and far from perceiving it as a hindrance, he shows off his chest. Sign of strength, he says. “I believe in myself and in my game, and I think that in all the games that I have played I have been prepared. I don’t think the five sets will weigh me down at all; It shows that I am prepared to play good tennis despite the hours I have been on the court. I feel good”, he continues while the data indicates that he has spent 20h 19m on the route to the crossroads, although Ruud’s investment (18h 27m) is not short either. The Nordic has left five partials along the way, for the six that the Spanish delivered.

    Ruud serves during the semi-final against Khachanov.Mary Altaffer (AP)

    Since the men’s circuit stores temporary records, 1999, there has been no one who has extended as much as Alcaraz in the direction of the New York final; On a big stage, the South African Kevin Anderson lasted until 9:01 p.m. at Wimbledon in 2018 and sets the record.

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    “In key moments I give my best version”, points out Alcaraz, who could become the fifth Spanish representative to triumph in the tournament after Nadal (four times), Arantxa Sanchez Vicario, Manolo Orantes and Santana did so. “I feel like a 19-year-old boy. It is true that perhaps I have matured very quickly, but that is what tennis does. In tournaments maybe I do feel a little older, with more responsibilities I would say, but once home, with my friends, my family and my people, I feel like a boy my age”, he emphasizes.

    The Norwegian Paradox

    All eyes are on him, the tennis player who has collected the most wins (50) and the most titles (4, like Nadal) in this 2022 explosion. He faked last year, fringe for discoveries and presentation, and taken the pulse of the elite, this season has definitely flown. He could see it coming, although now he needs one more stride to formally usher in the beginning of a new era. The it was alcarazIt is said that.

    Between him and the double dream, Ruud, a rival who has quietly progressed and who, paradoxically, also aspires to the world throne. If he wins, the Norwegian will have achieved it without outstanding prizes on the record – his most meritorious laurel does not exceed the ATP 250 category, the fourth professional category – and he would star in a historic jump, since such an abrupt jump had never before occurred ( today it is number five) to the top. Both have faced each other twice, and of the two (Marbella last year and Miami this) Alcaraz emerged victorious. Ready for his big day, the Spaniard balls towards the altar under the doctrine of hedonism: without fear, “it’s time to enjoy.”

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    AC | New York

    Juan Carlos Ferrero, who has been guiding the steps of Alcaraz for four years, knows perfectly well the route to the top of the circuit and what a premature explosion entails. The 42-year-old Valencian put the signature to the Davis Cup that Spain conquered in 2000 and from then on he was uncovered as a figure.

    Three years later, today’s coach raised his first and only major at Roland Garros, and would later rise to number one by defeating Andre Agassi in the US Open semifinals.

    Now, 19 years later, Alcaraz tries to emulate his footsteps. “Yes, we talk about it a lot. He has told me how he prepared that final, so I will try to enjoy it to the fullest and go for it”, anticipates the player from Murcia.

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    Source: EL PAIS


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