“Alcaraz is unbelievably strong” – Murray compliments Spanish teen after Vienna loss

Murray has said he would not be surprised if Alcaraz did really well at the Majors soon and added he felt he was due for a breakthrough in the coming weeks or months

Carlos Alcaraz of Spain hits a backhand on day nine of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.

Former world No 1 Andy Murray was all praise for Spanish teenager Carlos Alcaraz after going down to the 18-year-old in a tough straight sets battle at the Erste Bank Open in Vienna on Wednesday.

Alcaraz defeated Murray 6-3, 6-4 in a two-hour six-minute battle which saw both players run each other ragged from the back of the court.

The win is another step forward in the right direction for Alcaraz, who had never won a match on indoor hardcourt prior to this week. Already ranked No 42 in the world, the Spaniard has been tipped for becoming a world-beater in the years to come and Murray agreed on Wednesday that Alcaraz’s powerful shots and excellent court coverage make him stand out among other youngsters in the game.

“He hits the ball really hard from the back of the court, and I’d probably say like physically, I don’t really like comparing myself to other young players, but if I think back to when I was 18 in comparison to him, from a physical perspective, he’s unbelievably strong. It wouldn’t surprise me if he did really well in a Slam and was able to win long five-set matches already,” Murray said.

“A lot of younger players when they are 18, 19 are not physically ready for that. I’d say that’s probably the thing that stands out, physically he seems very, very strong. He’s obviously an excellent mover around the court as well, so that’s a big positive. Hopefully he can continue to build on that and improve on that as well.”

“I will break through in one week, or two weeks, or a few months”

Andy Murray

Despite the loss, Murray said he felt he was on the right track with regards to his own game and that his breakthrough is just around the corner. The Brit had beaten top 10 player Hubert Hurkacz in a three-set battle earlier this week, defeated American Frances Tiafoe in a three-hour 45-minute battle last week, and had overcome Alcaraz in Indian Wells earlier this month.

“I’m not going to keep losing in the second and third round of tournaments. I will get better and I will improve and I will break through in one week, or two weeks, or a few months,” Murray said as quoted by the ATP Tour. “It will happen. I obviously would like it to be happening quicker than what it is. If I continue on that path and build up a little bit more consistency, be that little bit more clinical and a bit more ruthless I will start winning more and have some deep runs, but it’s tough.”

Murray confirmed that he will be playing in Stockholm next and has yet to take a decision with regards to the Paris Masters.

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