Carlos Alcaraz speaks with CNN after US Open win.
(CNN) — Carlos Alcaraz and Rafa Nadal have a lot in common. The Spaniard from Spain was a favorite for the men’s singles at the US Open, but his long-anticipated path to glory ended as he lost on Saturday.
The American went on to become the youngest men’s singles champion at the US Open.
Rafa, at age 33, is also the oldest men’s singles champion.
Here’s how the two players compare in a few key areas:
The first thing you notice about Alcaraz is how young he is. At 22, he took the world by storm and was named the ATP’s 2009 Male Youngest Newcomer. The only question that remains about him is whether he can maintain his success for that entire decade of youth.
Alcaraz has to take his chances and enjoy his senior year in tennis because he needs to contend for the men’s world junior tournament.
As the only top player to win two consecutive junior Wimbledon Championships (2010-2011), Alcaraz was primed for an extended run at the Grand Slams, especially given his youth.
Of the 17 players in the top 100 of the men’s rankings, Alcaraz is the only one left.
Nadal, in his 12th season of tennis, has been a consistent winner since his teenage years. With Rafael Nadal, he has dominated the men’s game for years.
Nadal doesn’t play the long grass or the rough stuff like Alcaraz does. He also plays clay courts.
With more endorsements, Alcaraz could have reached the pinnacle of tennis, but he is at the junior level with the best players in the game. Alcaraz is learning from and observing them so he can take on them in a full season.
It’s a lot of pressure for a 22-year old.