Teen Alcaraz Makes History, Rallies Past Ruud For Miami Masters Title
Carlos Alcaraz’s assault on men’s tennis history is well underway. This afternoon, the teen became the youngest Miami Masters champion in history, rallying from 4-1 down in the first set to top Casper Ruud 7-5, 6-4.
“I have no words to describe how I feel right now,” Alcaraz said. “It’s so special to win my first Masters 1000 here in Miami. I have an unbelievable team with me and family… I’m so happy with the win and my team.”
Just 18, Alcaraz is the third youngest to ever win a Masters (behind Michael Chang and Rafael Nadal) and he becomes the first Spaniard to win the prestigious event in Florida (Rafa failed five times in the final).
Ruud actually began the match in form, breaking Alcaraz early. But with a break lead, Ruud’s game fell apart. He tried to take the net away, giving up the baseline where his mighty forehand had been dictating play.
Alcaraz caught fire and won nine of the next 10 games to go up 3-0 in the second. Ruud would manage to get a break back but Alcaraz calmly and confidently served it out at love.
“I knew that Casper is playing unbelievable. He has a big forehand. I tried to play to his backhand first and attack all the time,” Alcaraz said. “I tried not to let him dominate the match. Forehand down the line, backhand down the line was a pretty good key for me.”
Alcaraz, who moved to No. 11 in the rankings, is 18-2 on the season and SECOND in the 2022 ATP points race after a remarkable first three months of the season. He’s also a perfect 3-0 in ATP title matches, winning now at the 250, 500 and the 1000 level.
Ruud had lost to Alcaraz last year in Spain on the clay.
“In our previous match, he was coming at me almost firing flames at me,” Ruud said. “So the idea was to try to fight fire with fire, if I can say it that way, and come out and make him a little bit uncomfortable with how hard I would be hitting the ball, because then he wouldn’t have time to set up his shots.
“I started very well and hit some good winners, big winners and some big forehands. That was the idea.”
Ruud, who was playing in his first Masters final, still showcased his immense talent and his massive forehand during the fortnight.
“On the results side, I’m very happy with my result here in Miami,” the 23-year-old Ruud said. “Of course disappointing that I couldn’t go all the way, but I didn’t expect myself to reach the final in the first place, so I can’t be too upset about it.”
Both guys now head to their better surface — clay — on which they could again meet many more times.
“All I can say is I’ve got two titles on clay and one on hard court,” added Alcaraz. “I feel very comfortable in both surfaces, so I don’t mind playing on clay or on hard court.”
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