Carlos Alcaraz crushes Gael Monfils en route to the quarterfinals


He is the first teenager to reach this round at Indian Wells since Michael Chang in 1989

Carlos Alcaraz celebrates a winning shot.Harry HowAFP
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It is no longer a promise. the tennis of Carlos Alcaraz, At 18 years old, it is a reality as palpable as his classification for the quarterfinals of a Masters 1,000 like the one in Indian Wells. the murcian, in an almost perfect match, clearly mastered a veteran like Gael Monfils 7-5, 6-1 to become the first teenager to reach this round since Michael Chang in 1989. He soon begins to accumulate feats.

Watch your numbers. They presage a greatness to match the Big Three. By titles and position in the ranking At 18 years and 10 months old, it far exceeds what has been achieved at that point by Roger Federer y Novak Djokovic. Solo Rafael Nadal He is slightly above in that table, which then already had three titles compared to the two of Alcaraz.

In front of Monfils he gave a whole exhibition with 22 winners and an impregnable service. He held on in the first set after 10 great games from both rackets and tipped the balance with mastery, knowing how to wait for the right moment. The rest of the match was a single and unappealable speech, confirming that there is reason to dream big. If he is not another Rafa Nadal, he looks like one.

It didn’t take long for the match to become a magnificent spectacle for the crowd present in Stadium 2 of the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. On the one hand Monfils, with enormous power from the back of the track, and on the other Alcaraz looking for lines with pinpoint accuracy, in addition to releasing the drops that he enjoys so much and that soon began to wear down the Frenchman, 17 years older than him.

One of those, the third he tried, served him to break the Frenchman’s serve in the eleventh game and begin to dream of the next round, a fair reward for his greater impudence and intensity on the track. The number 19 in the world did not shake his hand at the time of closing the first round, firm at the service with a 72% success rate in first serves.

Monfils felt the blow and began to lose intensity and energy, also overwhelmed by the level of the Spaniard’s game, superb in his combinations of deep right and left behind against which the Frenchman could do nothing. Nor did he find an answer for the Murcian’s service, launched towards the quarterfinals as if it were a mere procedure. He put an incontestable 4-0 on the scoreboard in less than 20 minutes.

It was a second sleeve bordering on perfection. Alcaraz passed over his rival like a cyclone, as he already did with Robert Baptist in the previous round, as if they were not established players and within the Top 30 of the circuit. Yours is scary.

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