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“It hurt me a lot not to know how to deal with that pressure” – Alcaraz vows to learn from tough loss in Paris

Spain’s Carlos Alcaraz took to social media to reflect on a jarring loss to Hugo Gaston in Paris. The 18-year-old hopes to bank the experience and call it a lesson learned.

Carlos Alcaraz, Rolex Paris Masters, 2021 Cartlos Alcaraz (Esp) || 211507_0037 2021 ATP master1000 MASTERS masters1000 paris rolex spo sport tennis

Losing to a heavy underdog in front of a crowd that was vehemently against him has left Spain’s Carlos Alcaraz in a reflective mood. The 18-year-old Spaniard took to social media on Friday to try to make sense of his difficult loss on Thursday against France’s Hugo Gaston.

It was a wild affair that concluded a long day at the Accor Arena in Paris. Alcaraz dropped the opening set against the world No 103, but had opened up a 5-0 lead in the second set to seemingly take the crowd out of the equation. But Gaston had other ideas. Buoyed by the rowdy Parisian throngs, the crafty southpaw rallied as Alcaraz melted down – the Frenchman took the final seven games to lock up a stunning 6-4, 7-5 victory and a maiden Masters 1000 quarter-final.

Alcaraz – “I could not imagine that it could be so heavy”

Alcaraz has been through his share of big stage experience in 2021. He faced Rafael Nadal on the Centre Court at the Magic Box in Madrid, and later won over the faithful at the US Open, where he stunned Stefanos Tsitsipas in five sets for his biggest career win in the third round. But Thursday’s experience in Paris was something entirely different, says the Spaniard.

“It is never easy to play with the public against and yesterday it proved, I knew it would be difficult to deal with the atmosphere that existed but I could not imagine that it could be so heavy,” he said.

Alcaraz admitted he has never experienced anything like the raucous atmosphere that he encountered in Bercy on Thursday, and he hopes he can learn from the experience.

“My first time in this situation was not easy for me, it hurt me a lot not to know how to deal with that pressure but like everything in life, we fall but we get up and move on, the most important thing is to learn from these situations and I am sure that I will come back stronger and with lessons learned.”

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