Double delight for Carlos Alcaraz as he claims ‘special win’ and earns ‘dream’ match against Rafael Nadal
Carlos Alcaraz had plenty of reason to celebrate on Monday as he beat Adrian Mannarino in the opening round of the Madrid Open to claim a maiden ATP Masters 1000 win and earn a “dream” second-round clash against Rafael Nadal.
Playing in only his second Masters 1000 tournament, the 17-year-old produced a confident display as he defeated the world No 34 with a 6-4, 6-0 scoreline.
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The teenager broke in the opening game of the match and never looked back, going on to bagel the veteran Frenchman in the second set courtesy three breaks of serve.
“I am really, really happy. This is a special win for me here in Spain, here at La Caja Magica,” Alcaraz said. “[To] win a Masters 1000 match here is amazing.”
He will face 20-time Grand Slam champion and five-time Madrid Open winner Nadal on his 18th birthday on Wednesday.
“For me, [to] play against Rafa is a dream come true,” he said. “Since I was a kid, I wished to play a match against Rafa and now I will be able to here [on] the Centre Court of La Caja Magica in Madrid. It is a really special match against Rafa.”
Italian Fabio Fognini overcame Spanish qualifier Carlos Taberner 7-6 (7-4), 2-6, 6-3 to set up an all-Italian second-round clash against eighth seed Matteo Berrettini while 16th seed Carlos Garin from Chile defeated Spanish veteran Fernando Verdasco 6-1, 6-4.
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