Exclusive: Carlos Alcaraz ready for the French Open ahead of Alexander Zverev Madrid Open final showdown

by 24britishtvMay 8, 2022, 3 p.m. 11
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Carlos Alcaraz told Eurosport the French Open will be a "good challenge" for him after reaching the Madrid Open final.

Although he is delighted to be through to a second Masters final this year, the 19-year-old says that playing the likes of Djokovic and Nadal over five sets will pose a different test in his pursuit of a maiden major title.

"It feels great, it means a lot to me [to beat Djokovic]," he exclusively told Eurosport. "It means the hard work I do every day means a lot to me.

"I'm ready to play in Roland-Garros. I think I'm able to get great results in Grand Slams so I'm thinking for tomorrow for the final. But after this tournament I think Roland-Garros is a good challenge for me.

"It's a bit different [playing five sets]. Playing best-of-five means more time on court, you have to be more focused during more time and playing these type of players is tougher, but we are ready."
• Nadal backs Alcaraz to 'beat anyone in the world' after Madrid Open exit to teenager
• Jabeur makes history as she defeats Pegula in the final of the Madrid Open

Explaining why he prefers to be called 'Carlitos' rather than Carlos he said: "Carlitos everyone calls me that since I was a kid and I am still a kid so... Carlitos!"

The world No. 3 says he is not the favourite going into the match despite beating Alcaraz in Acapulco and Vienna this year and having a head-to-head record of 2-0.

"In general Carlos is one of the best players in the world right now," Zverev told Eurosport.

"He won Miami, Barcelona and he's winning almost every week so it is not going to be an easy match that's for sure but I'm looking forward to the challenge.

"I would say so right now with how past results were he's an up and coming player and I've struggled this year but that's hopefully in the past now."

Zverev says he was delighted to overcome Tsitsipas who he labelled the current best clay-court player in the world before the match.

"At the end of the day he is one of the best in the world and I'm happy with how I played, I'm happy with my match. I think I served well today and in general I feel like I managed the match well."

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