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Rafael Nadal has congratulated compatriot Carlos Alcaraz for his US Open title win. The 19-year-old became the first teenager to win a Grand Slam since Nadal himself back in 2005, and has become the youngest world No 1 in ATP rankings history after defeating Casper Ruud 6-4 2-6 7-6(1) 6-3.
Alcaraz made history with his US Open victory on Sunday night, becoming both the youngest-ever ATP world No 1 and the first male teenager to ascend to the top of the rankings. He defeated new world No 2 Ruud in an epic four-set thriller, in what was the first time that a Grand Slam final would also determine a brand new world No 1.
Nadal had also been in with a shot of ascending to the top of the rankings but both men denied him the chance by reaching the final, but it was clear the 22-time Grand Slam champion had no hard feelings as he was quick to congratulate both men after the match.
“Congratulations @carlosalcaraz for your first Grand Slam and for number 1, which is the culmination of your first great season, which I am sure will be many more!” the world No 3 tweeted.
JUST IN: Kerber gives comeback verdict after missing US Open for pregnancy And the 36-year-old also sent a message to Ruud, who has long trained at his Rafa Nadal Academy. Nadal added: “Great effort @CasperRuud98 ! very proud of you! Tough luck today but amazing tournament and season! Keep going!”
Ruud lost his maiden Grand Slam final to the elder Spaniard earlier this year at the French Open, and fell short once again to Nadal’s compatriot. The 22-time Major champion has also previously touted Alcaraz as a future world No 1 and multi-Grand Slam champion, with his prediction already starting to come true.
The pair met in the semi-finals of the Indian Wells Masters earlier this year, with Nadal narrowly winning the clash. But Alcaraz bounced back to wim his maiden Masters 1000 title the following week in Miami, coincidentally beating Ruud in the final.
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And ahead of their Indian Wells meeting, Nadal said: “I think he is unstoppable in terms of his career. He’s a good guy and [reminds] me a lot of things like when I was 17 or 18 years old kid. Carlos is a great guy and he is a potential No 1 player and multi-Grand Slam winner without a doubt, no?
“So it’s great that in Spain we have a player like him,” Nadal said. “The only thing I can do is wish him the best things possible because he will be fantastic for our sport if he is able to achieve amazing things for this sport.”
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