Novak Djokovic doesn’t feel threatened by Carlos Alcaraz claims Mats Wilander drawing comparison to the Serb’s battles with Federer-Nadal

Eurosport tennis expert Mats Wilander thinks Novak Djokovic is "enjoying" his rivalry with Carlos Alcaraz.


Novak Djokovic doesn’t feel threatened by Carlos Alcaraz claims Mats Wilander drawing comparison to the Serb’s battles with Federer-Nadal

Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Carlos Alcaraz and Novak Djokovic (Credits : Getty Images)

23-time Grand Slam champion Novak Djokovic has been part of some of the best rivalries in the sport of tennis. Djokovic has entertained the tennis world with his fierce encounters with Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer. Djokovic has played in five Grand Slam finals against Federer, losing only one. Djokovic leads the head-to-head, winning 27 out of 50. The head-to-head between the Spaniard and the Serb is much closer, as Djokovic just edges past Nadal, winning 30 compared to Nadal’s 29.

Over the last year, World No. 2 has established a nail-biting rivalry against another Spaniard named Carlos Alcaraz. Although the pair have only faced each other four times, sharing the spoils, the matches have been memorable. Their most recent encounter was the longest Masters 1000 final at Cincinnati. Former World No. 1 and 7-time Grand Slam champion Mats Wilander has compared Djokovic’s rivalry with Alcaraz to his battles with Federer and Nadal.

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Comparing the rivalries, Eurosport tennis expert Wilander said, “When he plays Carlitos, he seems to be enjoying the fight in a different way to when he plays Roger and Rafa. He plays like there’s no pressure, and he’s not threatened by him.”

Further talking about Djokovic’s mindset on his rivalry with Alcaraz, the former Swedish pro remarked, “He’ll be thinking, ‘I am 36 and he’s 20 years old. Yes, he can be No. 1, but I will be No. 1 right now.’ I think there is an enjoyment factor, and that’s why he fought to the very end at Cincinnati.”

Earlier, current World No. 1 Alcaraz embraced his rivalry with the 23-time Grand Slam champion. The young Spaniard said that he is cherishing the fight for the number one spot against Novak Djokovic.

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Novak Djokovic breezes past Alexandre Muller in his first-round encounter

djokovic 1st round us open 2023
Novak Djokovic in the first round of the US Open (Credits: USTA)

23-time Grand Slam title champion Novak Djokovic was off the blocks quickly in the first round of the US Open 2023. The Serb defeated Alexandre Muller 6-0, 6-2, 6-3 at the Arthur Ashe Stadium. With the win, Djokovic would regain the World No. 1 spot from Alcaraz after the end of the US Open. 

Alexandre Muller was full of praise for Djokovic. Talking to LÉquipe, the Frenchman said, “I told him, my coach, that against Alcaraz, I knew I was going to score plays. He tries a lot, so he makes a lot more mistakes. But against Novak, I felt like if he wanted to put me three times, 6-0, he could do it. He’s so solid; he doesn’t give any free points, and it’s more complicated for me. With Alcaraz, I have a little more air to win games.” 

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Djokovic will face Spaniard Bernabe Zapata Miralles in the second round. The match will be the first encounter between the pair.

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