Carloz Alcaraz is currently making headlines for his fantastic performance in the Mutua Madrid 2022. He will play today the final of the tournament against Alexander Zverev at 18:30 CET, an event that will have glued to the screens every tennis fan. Alcaraz qualified for the final defeating Djokovic in a thriller match 6-7(5), 7-5, 7-6(5) and after the victory he one more time asserted that chess is essential part of his training. Interestingly, Djokovic is also known to play chess, with his coach Becker saying “Key to tennis success is chess” The first time Alcaraz commented in depth about the importance of chess for him was in an interview for Marca this March 7th before Indian Wells (scroll down for the full text)
Interview with Carlos Alcaraz about chess by MARCA (March 7th)
One of the most unknown aspects of you is that you like to take a nap and play chess before games. Can you explain it to me?
That’s right. I was caught on camera at the Next Gen in Milan and in Rio I also slept because rest is important and even more so in such an intense week in which it rained and the games were delayed. Recovery was key and naps before games are for me. And chess helps me because you are concentrated, your head works…
How does chess specifically help you to practice tennis?
It helps me to be faster mentally, to watch plays, to see the move you want to make, the strategy… To be focused all the time. In chess, like tennis, you get lost for a moment and the game is already mixed up. In this aspect they are two quite similar disciplines.