Former Wimbledon champion says there is ‘zero chance’ Carlos Alcaraz and co will win 20 Grand Slams
It is unlikely that Carlos Alcaraz or any future tennis generations will achieve the same Grand Slam heights as the Big Three of Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer, according Marion Bartoli.
Teenage sensation Alcaraz won his maiden major a fortnight ago as he defeated Casper Ruud in the US Open final with his victory also resulting in him becoming the youngest world No 1.
Many believe the Spaniard will go on to win multiple Grand Slams with some even suggesting he could challenge Nadal, Djokovic and Federer.
The aforementioned trio have shared 63 majors and counting between them with Nadal on 22, Djokovic on 21 and Federer – who will retire from tennis after this week’s Laver Cup – on 20.
American Pete Sampras is fourth on the list of Grand Slam titles with 14 while Roy Emerson from Australia has 12 while Rod Laver and Bjorn Borg are on 11.
When Sampras retired on the back of winning his 14th major at the 2002 US Open, many predicted that his record would never be broken yet three players went on to better his mark by quite some distance, even though they all played in the same era.
2013 Wimbledon winner Bartoli, though, believes the bar has been set too high by the Big Three.
“I think there is absolutely zero chance that anyone ever – not only Carlos Alcaraz – will reach the bar of 20 or more [Grand Slams],” she Tennis Majors’ Match Points talk show.
“I think what the three guys have been achieving over those years is out of normality and I don’t think anyone can replicate it.
“Carlos’s achievement at the US Open was amazing, but I don’t think it’s realistic to set the bar for him at 20 and over.”
Words from his coach
Juan Carlos Ferrero admitted after his protégé’s win at Flushing Meadows that he is yet to reach his peak.
“I think he’s on 60% of his game. He can improve a lot of things. He knows and I know that we have to keep working,” former world No 1 Ferrero said.
“Once to get to the No 1, it’s not done and you go. You have to keep working, keep playing at a huge level on that tournaments to keep winning. He knows that and I know that. I’m going to be very close from him to remember him.”
And when asked if Alcaraz can fill the void that will be left once the Big Three call it a day, he replied: “I have the goal to put him on the high level of tennis.
“Of course, I think it’s going to be very, very difficult to achieve what they have done on tennis. We’re talking about 22 Grand Slams. He has only one. Is a long way still to go.
“But who knows? I think he has all the tennis and potential to be one of the best. All we have to do is try it.”
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