Carlito, meaning: ‘sportive nice guy’
A full-packed stadium and the man we are all waiting for entering the court: Carlos Alcaraz. Also known as Carlito. Carlito is a typical Spanish/Portuguese name, meaning ‘sportive nice guy’. Very suitable for this upcoming super talent from Spain. Exactly a year ago he had his break-through in this stadium at Umag. Entering as a qualifier and winning his first ATP title. Now, one year later, he is a famous tennis player (currently the world’s number 5) creating high expectations in the world of tennis.
Playing the best tennis of your life and still losing
His opponent was the Slovakian player Norbert Gombos. Lucky-loser and currently ATP-ranked 117. So, an easy day at the office for Carlito? Not really. Still, he won 6-2, 6-3, and was never in real trouble. And that is very well done, as Gombos probably played some of the best tennis of his life. It was a match of aggressive high-speed gravel tennis. Both men went for their shots and had a great defense. However, Carlito was better able to mix things up. Also throwing in some variation with slice, high slow spin balls, and drop-shots. The strengths of Carlito that are perhaps less visible are his steady return and extreme variation in his serve. Playing 200+ serves and extremely effective kick services of just 145 km/h. Supported by a cheering crowd Gombos kept fighting till the end. However, Carlito took his fourth match-point and was happy with his performance and to be back at Umag defending his title. He is ready for his quarter-finals!