Not Trying To Be Like Anyone Else: Carlos Alcaraz on Comparisons With Roger Federer

Published 11/27/2021, 8:11 AM EST

Spanish breakout star Carlos Alcaraz has had an inarguably terrific year. Not only did he rise up 109 places in the ATP rankings, but he finished his 2021 season in emphatic manner. The 18-year-old star won the Next-Gen ATP finals in Milan this year, putting the entire world on notice.


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Carlos Alcaraz is now the youngest player to earn 32 tour victories since Andrei Medvedev in 1992. Alcaraz only dropped a single set throughout the 21-and-under tournament, ultimately beating American Sebastian Korda in straight sets to win.


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Carlos Alcaraz is being compared to the Big Three already

Many in the tennis world have compared Carlos to members of the ‘Big Three’ already. This year alone, having picked up victories against the likes of Stefanos Tsitsipas, Andy Murray, and Jannik Sinner.

Tennis – ATP Masters 1000 – Madrid Open – Caja Magica, Madrid, Spain – May 5, 2021. Spain’s Rafael Nadal and Spain’s Carlos Alcaraz Garfia after their round of 32 match. REUTERS/Sergio Perez

Considering that he is from Spain and has been making great strides as a teenager, comparisons to Spanish legend Rafael Nadal have come naturally. However, Alcaraz has maintained that he tries not to think about such comparisons. According to him, this helps him avoid additional pressure during his matches.

“I try not to think about that (comparisons with Nadal),” he said in a conversation with ATPTour. “I say always the same – I’m focused on my path.”

Alcaraz’s mannerisms have even been compared to that of World No. 1 Novak Djokovic.


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Writing for The Players’ Voice, he addresses his comparisons with the Swiss legend Roger Federer. Alcaraz likens his mannerisms to the 20-time Grand Slam champion.

“I can look a little bit like him because of how dynamic I am on the court; playing very aggressive, playing a lot at the net, and playing drop shots,” he said. He further went on to talk about how Federer’s attitude, too, is something he believes he emulates. “He can do anything at any time and that is something I feel I can do as well.”

All the while, Carlos maintains how his coach, Juan Carlos Ferrero, tells him to approach such comparisons. “He tries to make me focus on myself, on Carlos Alcaraz, and not trying to be like anyone else,” Carlos explains.

Alcaraz is fulfilling his dreams


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Oct 10, 2021; Indian Wells, CA, USA; Carlos Alcaraz (ESP) reacts after winning a point during his second-round match against Andy Murray (GBR) in the BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Alcaraz shared how he had three objectives this year. Rising up through the ranks into the top-50 and winning the Next-Gen ATP Finals has checked two of them. All that remained for him was to represent his nation, Spain, at the Davis Cup.

He was all set to do that, and headline the Spanish contingent in the absence of Nadal, but unfortunately, he had to withdraw from the tournament due to a positive Covid-19 test.


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Do you think the comparisons to the Big Three are justified for the young Spaniard?

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Samarveer Singh

252 articles

Samarveer Singh is a tennis writer at EssentiallySports. Holding a degree in English Literature and a diploma in Fitness Sciences and Training, Samarveer is obsessed with tennis and basketball. A collegiate athlete himself, Samarveer admires all sportspersons who put in the work in order to achieve excellence.