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Next Gen ATP Finals: Carlos Alcaraz caps memorable breakthrough season with victory in Milan

Carlos Alcaraz defeated American Sebastian Korda to win the Next Gen ATP Finals in Milan; "It's the best way to finish the year," said the 18-year-old Spaniard, who has been tipped for big things in the game

Spain's Carlos Alcaraz celebrates with a trophy after winning the ATP Next Gen final tennis tournament against United States' Sebastian Korda, in Milan, Italy, Saturday, Nov. 13, 2021. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)
Image: Spain's Carlos Alcaraz won the ATP Next Gen finals in Milan

Spanish teenager Carlos Alcaraz won the Next Gen ATP Finals when he beat American Sebastian Korda 4-3 (7-5) 4-2 4-2 in Milan to cap a memorable breakthrough season.

Top-seeded Alcaraz needed only 82 minutes to seal his second title of the season.

He saved all six break points he faced while breaking twice and firing 15 winners past the 21-year-old Korda.

"I feel amazing. It's pretty good to end the year in the best way possible, winning this title, playing great matches against great players. It's the best way to finish the year," Alcaraz told reporters.

"(My coach) Juan Carlos (Ferrero) tells me that in the best, in the tough moments you have to play aggressive, you have to go for it, and that's what I did.

"I'm working on that, to be calm in the tough moments. That's the key for winning the tough points, the tough moments."

With the first-to-four format in place, Alcaraz was happy with most of the rules apart from the shorter warm-up periods which were reduced to just one minute.

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He said: "You have no time to warm up. I would say for the player, you can't warm up everything, every shot - the volley, the serve, the backhand, the forehand - at all.

"I would say that you have to warm up four minutes, to start the match in the best way possible."

Alcaraz, who climbed into the top 50 in the rankings this year, also became the youngest player to finish a year with 32 Tour-level victories since Ukrainian Andrei Medvedev achieved that feat in 1992 as an 18-year-old.

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