Match Reaction

Fritz On Alcaraz: 'He Has All The Tools'

The 25-year-old reflects on first encounter against the Spaniard
March 31, 2023
Taylor Fritz and Carlos Alcaraz embrace following their quarter-final clash in Miami.
Matthew Stockman/Getty Images
Taylor Fritz and Carlos Alcaraz embrace following their quarter-final clash in Miami. By ATP Staff

Taylor Fritz knew he would be in for a fierce battle Thursday when he met World No. 1 Carlos Alcaraz for the first time. But perhaps it was a more eye-opening experience than the American initially thought.

The Spaniard needed just one hour, 18 minutes to down Fritz 6-4, 6-2 in Thursday’s quarter-final at the Miami Open presented by Itau. Following the match, the 25-year-old was full of praise of the 2022 US Open champion’s repertoire.

“It's what I have seen for a while now. I said it a year ago when I watched him play, for how young he is, he just has all the tools,” Fritz said in his post-match press conference. “He can come to net, dropshot you, lob you, he's incredibly fast, he has all the power, his forehand is good, his backhand is good.

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“It's very rare to see someone so young so developed in their game and not really have anything that they need to work on so much. He has tonnes of different ways to play, and he can incorporate tonnes of different game plans to play different players because he has so many tools to win a match.”

A five-time tour titlist, Fritz said there was never a ‘gimme’ moment from Alcaraz as the Spaniard used every inch of the court to display superb shotmaking.

“He doesn't give you much for free so you have to work a lot to win pretty much every point,” Fritz said. “I think all the important points of the match he won, so it made a big difference.

“I did feel the level of the first three games was absolutely unbearable. He was hitting clean winners off of 110-mile-an-hour second serves I was hitting into his body. I'm stepping up and crushing backhands cross, and he's going open-stance backhand line winners off of that.”

The American No. 1 has clashed against each of the Big Three: Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Novak Djokovic. When the California native was asked how he would compare his encounter against Alcaraz to his meetings against the Big Three, Fritz again commented on the 19-year-old’s lethal style of play.

“I definitely felt like I had more breathing room against those guys than in this match,” Fritz said. “It's different game styles. Novak will have these long rallies, but he'll kind of slowly get you out of position and overwhelm me. I still feel like I can hang in these rallies for a long time and get more chances to attack.

“[Alcaraz] just [hit] winners and shots that hurt me off of a lot of shots that people normally aren't hurting me off of.”

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