After a rough start, Carlos Alcaraz defeats Daniil Medvedev to win the Indian Wells championship.

After a rough start, Carlos Alcaraz defeats Daniil Medvedev to win the Indian Wells championship.

In the beginning of his career on tour, Carlos Alcaraz enjoyed a sense of liberation and simplicity. However, as of late, he has experienced increased pressure due to his elevated ranking. This has manifested in struggles with his performance, mental state, physical well-being, and negative remarks from those wishing for his failure.

It was only a question of time before he regained his success, as he did on Sunday by winning his second consecutive Indian Wells title, defeating fourth seed Daniil Medvedev 7-6 (5), 6-1.

Alcaraz’s latest triumph is his first championship win at any level since his noteworthy defeat of Novak Djokovic in the Wimbledon finals eight months ago. Despite this accomplishment, he has faced several challenging defeats during this time. His entry into the California tournament brought with it doubts due to his recent ankle sprain in a match against Thiago Monteiro at the Rio tournament, which resulted in his retirement.

“I am incredibly grateful to have won this tournament, as I had many uncertainties leading up to it,” he stated. “I can vividly recall my first practice session, which lasted only 30 minutes with limited mobility. It was a difficult experience because I was worried that I wouldn’t perform at my best due to my ankle injury, so I had a lot of doubts. However, once I stepped onto the court, I began to feel more confident. With every match, I felt stronger and more at ease, so winning the tournament has brought me great joy.”

Similar to Iga Swiatek, who won the women’s championship a few hours before him, Alcaraz is making a remarkable and unique impact in the history of sports at a young age. At 20 years old, he becomes only the second player to have won five Masters 1000 titles before turning 21, a feat previously accomplished by Rafael Nadal. He has also achieved 13 tour titles so far. Additionally, Alcaraz surpasses his coach Juan Carlos Ferrero for the most Masters 1000 titles won, placing him second among Spanish players, with Nadal remaining in the lead with 36 titles.

Carlos Alcaraz holds the trophy after winning his first tournament in eight months.View image in fullscreen

In his early years on the tour, Jannik Sinner generated a lot of discussion. However, despite the increased excitement and attention surrounding him this year, his talent and achievements have not been fully recognized. In the current week, Alcaraz avenged his previous loss to Alexander Zverev in the quarter-finals of the Australian Open. He then impressed by recovering from a one-set deficit on Saturday afternoon and putting an end to Sinner’s 16-match winning streak with a decisive three-set victory.

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At the beginning of the last match, Medvedev quickly gained the upper hand with a 3-0 lead while Alcaraz struggled and made several mistakes. However, as the set progressed and the intense back-and-forth rallies continued, Alcaraz began to find his rhythm. Despite a close first set that ended in a tie-break, Alcaraz regained his confidence and played with complete ease to secure an impressive victory.