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Carlos Alcaraz improves to 4-1 in five-set matches.

Alcaraz: 'I Want To Play Big Battles'

Spaniard survives match point scare on Wednesday

Carlos Alcaraz can be described in many ways, but fearful isn’t one of them.

The 19-year-old, seeded sixth at Roland Garros, had ice water in his veins as he stared down a match point in the fourth set of his second-round battle on Wednesday with Albert Ramos-Vinolas. He played fearlessly in the tightest moments of the fourth-set tie-break and maintained his intensity as they passed the four-hour mark, eventually smacking a ball into the stands with glee after his 6-1, 6-7(9), 5-7, 7-6(2), 6-4 comeback.

”You always have nerves in the match, but I think I wasn’t nervous today,” said Alcaraz. “Just maybe at the end of the fourth set when I was down match point, there was maybe that thought, ‘Well, you are one point from losing.' But I tried not to think that I'm in Roland Garros. I'm trying to enjoy the moment.

”I respect him. I know him a lot. I knew that it was going to be a great match and a tough match. But I'm very happy with my level, being able to come back and of course beat him at the end.”

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Alcaraz might still be a teenager who only secured his driver’s license a few months ago, but he’s no longer a rookie on Tour. Despite this being only his sixth Grand Slam appearance, he has a 4-1 record in five-set matches. He’s served out matches to win ATP Masters 1000 titles and defeat legends of the game. He’s played on show courts at every Grand Slam.

It might be a stretch to refer to a 19-year-old as a veteran, but he’s already gained a level of experience that only a select few of his peers on Tour can match.

”I'm still young, but I would say a pretty experienced player now. I feel comfortable playing in big stadiums, big matches, playing in Grand Slams,” said Alcaraz. “Physically and mentally, I'm strong. I think I'm ready to play these kinds of matches in these situations and these tournaments."

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Perhaps most importantly, Alcaraz is relishing these moments. He riled the crowd up when the moment called for it against Ramos-Vinolas and took time to sign autographs after more than four hours of play.

His path doesn’t get easier as he gears up for a high-profile third-round showdown with No. 27 seed Sebastian Korda, but it’s a position that Alcaraz wants to continue finding himself in.

"In the fourth and fifth sets, I smiled with my team. So I enjoy the battles,” said Alcaraz. "I want to play big battles and tough battles against the best players in the world.”

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