US Open: Alcaraz eyes 'many years' at the top after first grand slam and world number one ranking

By Sports Desk September 11, 2022

Carlos Alcaraz never thought his success would come as quickly as it has, with the 19-year-old becoming the youngest men's world number one in history by defeating Casper Ruud in the US Open final on Sunday.

It was Alcaraz's first grand slam final, and in the process he broke the record for the most cumulative court time at a single grand slam after grinding through three consecutive five-set matches in the lead-up to the four-set final.

This is the third big tournament the Spaniard has won this year. He became the first player born after the year 2000 to win an ATP 1000 Masters event when he beat Ruud at the Miami Open, and then followed it up with a straight-sets win over Alexander Zverev in the Madrid Open final.

Speaking to the media after his maiden major title, Alcaraz called it "crazy" and a "dream".

"Well, it's crazy for me," he said. "I never thought that I was going to achieve something like that at 19 years old – everything has come so fast.

"For me it's unbelievable. It's something I've dreamed since I was a kid, since I started playing tennis. Of course, lifting this trophy today is amazing for me.

"Right now I'm enjoying the moment – I'm enjoying having the trophy in my hands – but, of course, I'm hungry for more. 

"I want to be at the top for many, many weeks – hopefully many years. I'm going to work hard again after this… I'm going to fight for more of this."

With his rapid rise to the pinnacle of the sport, Alcaraz said his victory in Miami was when he realised the path he was on could include grand slam titles.

"Honestly, since I won Miami," he said. "Since I won Miami, I thought I was able to have a grand slam in my hands.

"But before Miami, I was thinking that I have to still grow up. I thought that I'm able to have good results in a grand slam, but not a champion.

"But I would say after Miami – I won great matches in a row – I would say after that I thought that I'm able to win a grand slam."

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