There you go, everything is ready, from the Hard Rock Stadium of Miami Gardens for the grand finale Miami Open presented by Itau. At 1:00 p.m. local time, 7:00 p.m. in Italy, the start of the men’s final of the 37th edition of the Florida Masters 1000. Face to face, two rookies in the last act of a tournament of this magnitude, the tds n. 14 Carlos Alcaraz and the nm 6 Casper Ruud.
THE IBERIAN PHENOMENON RECORD HUNT– On one side, the eighteen-year-old Spaniard, with the viewfinder pointed at the camera to overthrow Miami’s first champion from the throne. 1 in the world Novak Djokovic. The Serb, in fact, first triumphed among the Florida Alligators at the age of 19 in 2007, winning the first of his 37 titles at the 1000 level, when Carlitos was just 3 years old. During this edition, the tournament, officially called Sony Ericsson Open at the time, was still held in its historic Key Biscayne venue – which was the scene of the event from 1984 to 2019 – before its transfer to the establishment. which normally hosts the house. Miami Dolphins football team games.
Too, the native of Murcia will also try to become the third youngest winner of a Masters 1000, in 283 events in this category, created in 1990. Only the American Michael Chang and Major Rafa title record holder Nadal, they triumphed in their first 1000 tournament at an even younger age than the young Iberian would triumph at the Miami Open. On the shoulders of the pupil of Juan Carlos Ferrero, there will also be the weight of the curse which has always struck his compatriots in the last act of this tournament; that is the record of 8 defeats in 8 finals disputed by tennis players of the red furies.
OSLO NATIVE’S EARLY TIMES AND COMPARED GOALS – On the other hand, the 23-year-old player from Oslo, number 8 in the ranking, who instead aims to achieve the most important goal of his career, which would allow him to become Miami’s 33rd top ten men’s singles champion. In fact, if the younger of the two contenders ended up winning, it would only be the fifth winner in the history of the tournament ranked among the top 10 players in the world. The Norwegian, moreover with the final success, he would improve his best ranking by moving up the rankings by one position and climbing to n. 7 APTs. While the boy from El Palmar, whatever the outcome tonight, starting tomorrow reach the peak of their career, which will be n. 12 if defeated and at nm 11 if he should triumph (in which case, he would even surpass Sinner).
Private Casper, however, will take the field not only for himself but also for his country. In fact, it had never happened that a Norwegian tennis player reached a Masters 1000 final from 1990, when this category of tournaments was created, until today. For Ruud, it will be the tenth major circuit final, with a report that reads 7 statements and only two losses; the second on the fast after the one clearly won in 2021, still in the United States, on the hard in San Diego 6-0 6-2 against Norrie. While for AlcarazATP number 16, it will be the fourth final career. In the previous ones he always triumphed and therefore he is undefeated in the last acts of the tournaments Sir. Moreover, with the title in Miami, Alcaraz would only miss a Grand Slam and a title in the final to already be able to boast of a tournament in each category at the age of 18; after the ATP 250 in Umag (with this success he became the youngest winner of an ATP title since Nishikori in Delray Beach 2008) and the Next Gen ATP Finals in Milan last year; embellished by the success of a few weeks ago in the 500 in Rio de Janeiro (thanks to which he became the youngest winner of a 500 in 151 events since their creation in 2009 and the first to break the wall of the top 20 by Andrei Medvedev in 1993).
However, it will be a tough business for Carlos, given the Norwegian’s extensive progress in recent months on fast surfaces; who had entered the 2021 season with a career record of 16-27 on hard courts. Since then, however, the trend has clearly changed course, with a more extraordinary +23, result of 36 wins and 13 losses, to which is added the icing on the cake represented by the exceptional semi-final of the Final in Turin . Obviously his precocity records are in no way comparable to those of the Spanish baby phenomenon, but from this point of view he too could write a small page of history; for succeeding, he would become the youngest winner of the Miami tournament since Sir Andy Murray, winner in 2009 at the age of 21.
THE UNICUMS OF THEIR CAREERS – In summary of these statistical curiosities, we see that the final we are about to attend is between beginner at level 1000, it’s not uniqueindeed, this had happened in the last edition of 2021; when Hubert Hurkacz – beaten by Alcaraz in the semi-finals on Friday – and our Jannik Sinner faced off. We’ll see if Alcaraz completes in the best way this incredible run that he started with the feat of the quarters reached at the last Us Open, when he eliminated the n. 3 of the world’s Tsitsipas in round of 16 tie-break of the fifth set becoming the youngest player to reach this point in a Grand Slam tournament since Michael Chang at Roland Garros in 1990. With the top 10, the 18-year-old Iberian claims a budget in the draw with 6 successes, including the declarations this week with Tsitsipas and Hurkacz, – with the declaration against the Pole, he reached 17 seasonal victories against only 2 defeats in this 2022, among others coming against Berrettini in the fifth in Australia and with Nadal in three sets in the semi-finals of Indian Wells – and 6 defeats. He also became the first of four other teenagers to reach the semi-finals in both rounds of the Double Sun. The other four to have achieved this from an early age are: Nadal, Djokovic, Murray and Agassi; these players have a common denominator that bodes well for Carlos for the rest of his career. They all became number 1 in the world rankings.
Even Ruud isn’t kidding this year, as he too secured a clay title in Buenos Aires and this season has so far recorded 13 wins and only 3 knockouts. The old no. 1 junior after winning 57 games, crowned with 5 titles, (including three consecutive triumphs in July at Bastad, Gstaad and Kitzbhuel, the first since Murray in 2011) managed to establish countless firsts in relation to his nationality. The workaholic from Oslo has indeed become the first Norwegian tennis player to break into the top 10, win an ATP title and qualify for the Masters among the top 8 teachers on the circuit. The son of Scandinavian art will therefore arrive at this meeting very loaded, after having won the most prestigious victory of his career in the quarter-finals against Zverev (n.4) and after having finally overcome the obstacle of the 1000 m of semi-final, in the previous three. in red (Rome 2020, Montecarlo and Madrid 2021) he had always come out defeated. Instead, he finally stopped that negative trend early on on hard. Only one direct confrontation, which took place last season in the quarter-finals of the ATP 250 in Marbella, when Alcaraz at home in front of their home crowd won 6-2 6-4.
PRE-MATCH QUOTES – Obviously the favorite of the meeting, given the incandescent state of form, is by far Alcaraz. Even bookmakers’ odds confirm this. The Spaniard oscillates between Eurobet 1.31 and Bet 365 1.33. While as far as Norwegians are concerned, the most benevolent part is that of Sisal (3.20), on the contrary the most damaging negatively for the good Casper is 3.55 by Unibet.