Carlos Alcaraz has now become the new men’s number one after winning the US Open on Sunday. Alcaraz defeated Casper Ruud 6-4 2-6 7-6 (7-1) 6-3 to claim his first Grand Slam title at just age 19. The win propelled Alcaraz to the number one position while Ruud holds the second spot. Alcaraz replaces Daniil Medvedev at the top spot, as the Russian has now slipped to number 4.
Alcaraz broke into the top 20 bracket back in February after winning the Rio Open title, and since then, he has achieved several feats that has seen him continue to climb the ranking, eventually making it to top 5. In April, he won his first Masters 1000 title at the Miami Open, where he also defeated Ruud at the final. He then won the Barcelona Open, which saw him enter the top 10 positions.
Indeed 2022 has been nothing short of phenomenal for the Spanish teenager, and from the looks of things, he is just getting started. Speaking after his win on Sunday, he said, “This is something which I dreamt of since I was a kid, being number one in the world and a champion of Casper Ruud a Grand Slam. It is something I have worked very hard for. It is really, really special.”
The rise of young players like Alcaraz is a major sign that the era of the Big 3 (Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Novak Djokovic), is drawing to a close as the current competition is getting stuff. Although none of the players now have anything near any of the Big 3 in terms of Grand Slam titles or overall accomplishment, the crop of players we have now are proving themselves with every chance they get.
Alcaraz is the only player not among the big 3 to have won a Grand Slam title this year after Nadal won the Australian and French Open while Djokovic won at Wimbledon. His coach, Juan Carlos Ferrero, believes Alcaraz has only reached 60% of his full potentials, meaning we are bound to see a whole lot more from him in the future.