Carlos Alcaraz made a breakthrough run in 2022, coming from the outside the top-30 to become the youngest world no. 1! Carlos made a name for himself in February 2018, entering the Spain F5 Futures in Murcia and reaching the quarter-final as a qualifier, still at 14! Thus, the young Spaniard became the first player born in 2003 on the ATP ranking list. Located near his house, Murcia Club de Tennis was a perfect location for a junior to make his first professional steps and show his rich talent.
Carlos passed eight grueling sets to qualify for the main draw and gather attention. The young gun faced the 2nd seed Federico Gaio in the first round on February 14 and stunned the top-300 player 7-5, 4-6, 7-6 in two hours and 50 minutes!
Thus, Alcaraz became the first player born in 2003 with a professional victory, achieving it before even stepping on the ITF junior Tour! It was a mighty close encounter, with 119 points for each. However, a teenager claimed the final three points of the clash for an impressive professional debut and his first ATP point.
Carlos Alcaraz reached the quarter-final on his professional debut in 2018 at 14.
Both players scored four breaks of serve, and the home favorite made a nice comeback in the opener. Carlos rallied from a 4-2 down to take it 7-5 and gather a massive boost.
Gaio was in front in set number two and brought it home to arrange the decider, which turned into an open war! Carlos was 5-2 in front after earning a break in game six and served for the victory at 5-3. Federico made one last push and broke back to prolong the duel and his chances.
The set went into a tie break, and the Spaniard claimed three consecutive points at 4-3 to emerge at the top and write history books. Thus, the 14-year-old advanced into the second round after spending over ten hours on the court in four encounters.
Carlos was hungry for more, feeling good physically and looking for more triumphs. Alcaraz faced the Russian Nikita Tayanin in the second round and embraced another tough battle. Carlos prevailed 7-5, 7-6 in two hours and three minutes for a place in the quarter-final!
It was a mighty close encounter with only nine break points. Alcaraz grabbed two return games and experienced one break to prevail and move into the last eight. The Spaniard took charge in the closing stages of both sets to extend his incredible run and earn more ATP points.
The rivals traded breaks in the opener’s games three and four, and Carlos broke again at 6-5 to wrap up the set and gain a boost. The youngster dropped eight points behind the initial shot in the second set and kept the pressure on Tatyanin.
The Russian also served well, saving one break point and reaching a tie break, a must-win one for him. Tatyanin climbed back from 5-0 down before Alcaraz sealed the deal at 6-5 to book a place in the quarter-final. Carlos faced the 5th seed Sergio Gutierrez-Ferrol in the last eight and had nothing more left in the tank.
The winner of almost 20 Futures titles scored a 6-0, 6-4 triumph to end the youngster’s campaign. It was the last professional event for Alcaraz in 2018, returning to action a year later and continuing with his progress toward the top.