Carlos Alcaraz to follow in footsteps of idol Rafael Nadal and set up tennis academy in his hometown in Spain

Carlos Alcaraz and Rafael Nadal
Carlos Alcaraz and Rafael Nadal

While he may just be 20 years old, Carlos Alcaraz is mapping out his future and the future of tennis in Spain as he is reportedly eyeing an academy in his hometown.

Alcaraz has attained the status of one of the biggest stars in the sport at such a young stage in his career. Having already won two Grand Slams and four ATP 1000 titles, the future surely looks bright for the Spaniard. Though he still has a long way to go in his tennis journey, Alcaraz has set out plans to create a tennis academy in his home district of Murcia in Spain.

The vision is to create a facility where not only local talent can be nurtured, but international stars can train as well. It is reported that Carlos Alcaraz's coach and former Roland Garros champion, Juan Carlos Ferrero, is also involved in planning the new venture. Ferrero himself runs one of the world's best tennis academies, the JC Ferrero-Equelite Sport Academy.

With his dream of setting up his academy, Alcaraz will follow in the footsteps of his idol and Spanish legend Rafael Nadal, who established the Rafa Nadal Academy in Mallorca, Spain, in 2016. Since then, RNA has become a hub for several top tennis players, including Casper Ruud, Felix Auger-Aliassime, Andy Murray, and Bianca Andreescu, who have been seen training there.

Rafael Nadal has been nurturing the next generation of athletes since 2010, when he opened the 'Nadal Educational Tennis School' in the remote village of Anantapur in India. The school was set up to help kids from disadvantaged backgrounds with academic support and coaching in sports, including tennis.

Carlos Alcaraz begins his maiden tournament in China with emphatic wins

Carlos Alcaraz pictured at 2023 China Open
Carlos Alcaraz pictured at 2023 China Open

Carlos Alcaraz is currently playing his first-ever tournament in China, the ATP 500 China Open in Beijing. Seeded No. 1, he has faced little trouble in his first two matches. He began his campaign against Yannick Hanfmann of Germany on September 29 and secured a win in straight sets 6-4, 6-3.

The World No. 2 then faced Lorenzo Musetti of Italy in the second round on October 1 and dispatched his challenge in just over 1 hour, 6-2, 6-2. He will next face Casper Ruud in the quarterfinals on October 2. Alcaraz has won all three encounters against the Norwegian, most recently defeating him at the 2022 US Open final to lift his first Grand Slam title.

The Beijing Open is Alcaraz's first tournament since his title defense at the US Open ended in the semifinals against Daniil Medvedev. The Russian is also competing in Beijing and is projected to play the reigning Wimbledon champion in the final if he gets through his half.

What is the foot injury that has troubled Rafael Nadal over the years? Check here