Before last year's Madrid Masters, Stefanos Tsitsipas was the youngest player to have defeated Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. Stefanos knocked out Novak in Toronto 2018 and unseated Rafa a year later in Madrid to complete an arduous task at the age of 20. Carlos Alcaraz took the record from Tsitsipas in style at the Caja Mágica last year, defeating two legends on consecutive days at 19 years and two days! Alcaraz became the fifth player to win over Nadal and Djokovic on back-to-back days and the first to defeat them on clay. The young Spaniard achieved his first victory over Nadal in the quarterfinals, beating his idol 6-2, 1-6, 6-3 in two hours and 28 minutes. Carlos took advantage of the fact that Rafa had not played for six weeks, dominating sets one and three to arrange the clash against Novak Djokovic. The teenager defended six of nine break points and secured four breaks that took him to the final. Alcaraz hit 37 winners and started again from the third set to topple the king of clay and stay in contention for the title. A day later, Carlos beat world number 1 Novak Djokovic 6-7, 7-5, 7-6 in three hours and 35 minutes of an epic battle. The match only registered three service breaks. The young tennis player kept his cool in the closing stages of sets two and three to clinch victory and advance to the title clash in front of his fans. Djokovic came back from 4-2 down in the first set and took command after the opening blow to keep the pressure on the other side. The Serb prevailed in the tie break 7-5, which gave him a great boost going into the second set.
McEnroe speaks about Rafa Nadal
Tennis legend John McEnroe recently weighed in on speculation about Rafael Nadal's retirement following his 2023 Australian Open exit. "My hope is he goes out when he wants to go out, not when we want him to go out. You are talking about a GOAT – greatest of all time – type of athlete," McEnroe said. "Rafa, from what I've heard, wants to keep playing. You know, he loves the competition, he loves the process, and he loves the sport and we love him for that," McEnroe said. "But if the body doesn't hold up and he feels like he can't get to that type of level health-wise that he needs to, to win majors, then I think he'll quit," he added.
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