Andy Murray explains why Carlos Alcaraz will be world No 1 ahead of Indian Wells clash

Andy Murray says he's in the 'bad books' after losing ring

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Andy Murray will face the Spanish teenager he has tipped to be a future world No 1 in his second match at the BNP Paribas Open. Carlos Alcaraz, 18, became the youngest Spaniard to win an ATP Tour title since Rafa Nadal in 2004 with his victory in Umag in July.

The Scot, 34, then picked him as a future world beater – and will now get his first chance to see the world No 38 up close in California.

“He’s already a fantastic player but he’s got bags of potential,” said Murray. “I think there are a few guys that can obviously get there but just from watching him, I don’t see many flaws for a young player.

“From what I’ve seen, he’s got all the tools to be at the top of the game very soon.

“I think physically he’s extremely strong and moves great around the court. He obviously plays well on the clay and on the hard courts which isn’t the case for all the young guys.

“He’s got a big game and I think he’s got a good attitude. I spoke a little bit to his coach Juan Carlos Ferrero about him and he said he’s a good worker and he loves tennis and is very humble and stuff but believes in himself a lot.

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“I think that from watching him and then chatting to you the guy who’s coaching him who obviously has got a lot of experience up at the top of the game.

“They would be the reasons I think he will be world No 1. There are no guarantees but I would say he’s got the ability potentially to get there.”

Former world No 1 Murray opened his first appearance at Indian Wells since 2017 with an efficient defeat of Frenchman Adrian Mannarino 6-3, 6-2.

And the world No 121, who risks a big drop down the rankings when he loses his points from his 2019 European Open win, said his “mentality” and “focus” had been the keys to only his 10th ATP Tour-level win of the year.

“It may not necessarily be like that you’re not concentrating on the match, but it may be concentrating on the wrong things as well,” he said.

“I might be focused on maybe what just happened rather than, what’s about to happen, sometimes looking back a bit.

“Sometimes in matches when I’ve had chances and opportunities, maybe I’m looking forward too much, maybe concentrating on the wrong stuff. I’m trying to be a little bit more present and focus on just every single point.

“I think I did a good job of that. I did well considering the conditions. I don’t think I played amazing tennis or the best tennis that I can play.

“But I still won comfortably against a very good player just by knuckling down on every point.”

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