“Alcaraz definitely looks like somebody who has the intention to dominate the game in the years to come.” But he was still eager to show them he was still on top as he joked: “So I think it is good that there are some new faces, but I will not give up. I will make sure I kick their butts for as long as I possibly can! They will kick my butt sometimes maybe, but hopefully, less than I kick theirs.”
The world No 7 was also glad to see a new era of champions being formed as he and Rafael Nadal entered the final years of their respective careers, with Roger Federer retiring at last month’s Laver Cup. “So I think it is something that was inevitable to happen after the 15 years of domination of Nadal, [Roger] Federer, myself, [Andy] Murray, [Stan] Wawrinka and [Juan Martin] Del Potro,” he confessed.
“These guys have been leading the game, and of course, you are going to have the next generation. Many people are concerned if the game is in good hands and whether people are going to continue watching after the ‘golden era’, so to speak, but it was a ‘golden era’ with [Bjorn] Borg, [John] McEnroe, [Pete] Sampras, [Andre] Agassi and [Boris] Becker and still, there were new guys coming up.”