Carlos Alcaraz ‘doesn’t want to think about it’ as he makes Djokovic legacy joke

Djokovic celebrates after ending year as world no.1

Carlos Alcaraz has joked that he ‘doesn’t want to think about’ the possibility of breaking Novak Djokovic’s record for the most weeks spent at the top of the ATP rankings. The Serb is about to begin his 400th week at the summit after winning the Paris Masters and setting up another title showdown with Jannik Sinner at the ATP Finals in Turin.

Alcaraz has long been hailed as Djokovic’s eventual successor and has emerged as his main rival in light of Roger Federer’s retirement and Rafael Nadal’s constant injury struggles. However, the Spaniard is not allowing himself to think about the idea of breaking Djokovic’s record just yet in spite of his potential to dominate men’s tennis in the future.

“Well, honestly, if I have to think about it, I have to stay there about 15 years, so it’s unbelievable,” said Alcaraz after losing to Djokovic in the last four at the ATP Finals.

“Of course I’m motivated because I want to beat this guy. I want to be the best in history. I want to practice with a goal. I want to beat him. I want to win every tournament that I’m going to play. But at the same time I will not think about it because it’s really, really difficult.

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“It’s something that a legend from our sport could make it. It’s unbelievable what he’s doing, just breaking records, winning every tournament that he goes. It’s crazy. It’s a mix of motivation and a mix of I don’t want to think about it.”

Alcaraz was beaten in straight sets by Djokovic on Saturday, with the latter producing a fine display of tennis to set up a meeting with Sinner in the decisive match at the ATP Finals. He picked apart his younger rival with ease and will be hoping to capitalise on his momentum by winning the event for the seventh time in his career on Sunday.

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Djokovic heaped praise on Alcaraz after the match, insisting that the 20-year-old always brings out the best in him whenever they do battle on the court. He said: “He’s one of the most complete players that I ever faced in my career. It’s quite impressive for his age that he’s able to play consistently well now for several years already.

“He’s the youngest ever No 1 in the world that we had. A brilliant career already, and I think it’s quite obvious that he’s going to have a brilliant career full of success in the years to come. He’s still very, very young but, yeah, he does bring the best out of me.

“He makes me prepare for the match as best that I possibly can. That’s where I probably would compare it to the preparations that I had in the matches against Nadal or Federer, where I had to come out every single time at the peak of my abilities in order to win against them.”

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