Carlos Alcaraz: "Novak Djokovic has shown he is prepared to win 4 Grand Slams & Olympic gold; we are here to prevent it"
Carlos Alcaraz is eager to stop Novak Djokovic from achieving the Golden Slam next year.
Alcaraz, who is currently in Mexico for an exhibition event, declared his intentions for the 2024 season, which includes the Paris Olympics, in a recent press conference. The Spaniard said he will be ramping up his preparations for the jam-packed season and try to top the success he had in 2023.
"With the Games in the summer, after Wimbledon, it's going to be a tough season, like all the ones I've done so far. We're going to try to get strong, get in the best possible shape, to try to make it the same or better than this season,” he told the Mexican press (translated from Spanish via Madrid Actual).
Carlos Alcaraz specifically said that a medal at the Paris Olympics is on his radar.
“And try to bring a medal to my country. That is what I would like the most and for which we are going to work," he added.
The World No. 2 also made a reference to Novak Djokovic, who has openly expressed his Golden Slam wish (i.e. winning all four Grand Slams of the season as well as an Olympic gold).
“2024, with the Games, is going to be a special year for everyone, players, athletes, for people who love sports. Djokovic has already shown year after year that he is prepared to win the four 'Grand Slam' and the Olympic gold, but we are here to prevent it. It is going to be a very intense 2024," he said.
The Spaniard helped prevent Novak Djokovic winning the Calendar Slam in 2023 as he defeated the Serb in the Wimbledon final. Djokovic, who won the other three Majors in the season, thus fell one win short of achieving the feat yet again.
This was the third such instance in Djokovic's career; he also fell one match short of the Calendar Slam in 2015 and 2021.
Novak Djokovic will contest his fifth Olympic games in Paris; Carlos Alcaraz will make his debut
Novak Djokovic will be gearing up for a fifth appearance at the Summer Olympics in 2024. The World No. 1 made his debut in 2008, where he clinched a bronze medal for his country. A gold medal has, however, eluded the Serb.
For Carlos Alcaraz, the 2024 Paris event, which will be held at the Stade Roland Garros, will mark his Olympics debut.
The Spaniard, however, won’t be granted direct entry to the tournament despite his high ranking. The 20-year-old did not participate in Spain’s Davis Cup ties this season and thus failed to meet the requirements for the event.
While Alcaraz could have made up for his 2023 absence during the 2024 qualifiers in February, Spain was granted a wildcard entry to the group stage. That will be held in September 2024, after the conclusion of the Summer Olympics.
Given the circumstances, the Spaniard will be required to write a letter to the ITF via the Royal Spanish Tennis Federation (RTEF). He will have to explain the reason for his Davis Cup absence and his intent to represent Spain in the qualifiers, which is now canceled due to the team’s direct entry to the group stage.