Carlos Alcaraz Pays Homage to Tennis Icon Rafael NadWorld No.2 Carlos Alcaraz, fresh off his 2023 Wimbledon triumph, recently shared heartfelt sentiments about his enduring admiration for tennis maestro Rafael Nadal. In an exclusive video posted on the LTA social platform, the 20-year-old tennis sensation provided fans with a glimpse into his profound connection with the ‘King of Clay.’
Alcaraz’s Tennis Odyssey With Nadal
From the outset of his tennis journey, Alcaraz has consistently revered Nadal as his hero and role model. Reflecting on his deep-rooted admiration, the 14-time French Open champion remains an enduring source of inspiration for the rising star. Alcaraz emphasized in the video:
“My hero was Rafael Nadal, and it’s still Rafael Nadal… Since I started playing tennis, I look up to Rafa every time that I watch his matches. Of course, I look up to Federer. But you know, it has been always, always Rafa.”
Elaborating on his profound connection with the sport, Alcaraz recounted pivotal moments in Nadal’s career that he witnessed as an avid follower.
Alcaraz’s First Encounter with Nadal
Alcaraz nostalgically recounted his first meeting with the Roland Garros master at the Mutua Madrid Open when he was just 12 years old. He shared, “The first time I met him, I was 12 years old. He was in the Mutua Madrid Open, in the semifinal or something like that in the big one, and yeah, I took a photo, and this is the first that I was with him.”
Could we see the dream match-up between two Spanish superstars in 2024? 🤩 pic.twitter.com/Pb0uAKhfqz
— LTA (@the_LTA) December 1, 2023
The duo has crossed paths three times on the tour, with Nadal currently holding a 2-1 lead over the young prodigy. Notably, Nadal is set to bid farewell to the tour after a limited 2023 season due to injury concerns.
Nadal and Alcaraz Eyeing Tokyo Olympics Doubles
With two Olympic medals already in his illustrious career, Nadal has expressed a keen desire to team up with the talented Carlos Alcaraz for doubles at the Paris Olympics in 2024. The prospect excites both players, with Nadal looking forward to being a motivator for the 20-year-old rather than just a partner.
Alcaraz reciprocated the enthusiasm, describing the opportunity to play alongside his childhood hero as a dream come true moment. As the tennis legend contemplates his farewell season, the potential Olympic collaboration adds a poignant chapter to their shared tennis journey.