Indian Wells (USA), March 14 (IANS) World no. 2 Carlos Alcaraz of Spain secured a milestone moment in his career by notching his 100th tour-level win after beating Dutchman Tallon Griekspoor 7-6(4), 6-3 in the third round of the Indian Wells Masters, here on Monday night.
With his 100-32 tour-level record, the 19-year-old has earned second place on the list of fewest matches to 100 wins among players to reach No. 1 in the ATP Rankings at some stage during their career.
Only American great John McEnroe (100-31) reached his century faster than Alcaraz, who sits above Andre Agassi (100-35), Rafael Nadal (100-37), and Mats Wilander/Jimmy Connors (both 100-38) on the list.
The Spaniard has his sights set on bigger goals this week by winning the Indian Wells title and returning to World No. 1.
'I'm really proud to get my 100th win on the ATP Tour and I hope it's the first 100 of many. Honestly, I searched that start today, (but) I didn't know. I thought it was in the next round,' Alcaraz was quoted as saying by the ATP Tour.
Alcaraz won a closely contested opening set, raising his level in the tie-break after the aggressive Griekspoor matched him shot for shot to that point. While the Spaniard did not consistently hit the heights of his opening-round win against Thanasi Kokkinakis, he still produced plenty of show-stopping winners, complete with his usual complement of drop shots.
Some precision passing shots helped Alcaraz take a 3-0 lead in set two, with the Spaniard saving his first two break points of the tournament to consolidate an early break. Down 0/30 as he served out the match, he dialed up the power to win the final four points of the match.
Next up for Alcaraz is Briton Jack Draper, who defeated Andy Murray 7-6(6), 6-2 earlier on Monday night. The pair will contest a second ATP Head-to-Head meeting on Tuesday evening, after Alcaraz won a three-setter in Basel last October.
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