"I was not feeling well with my ankle, so a lot of doubts for me.": Carlos Alcaraz after defending Indian Wells title

The 20-year-old Spaniard was returning from an ankle injury which forced him to retire from his opening match at the Rio Open last month.

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"I was not feeling well with my ankle, so a lot of doubts for me.": Carlos Alcaraz after defending Indian Wells title

Carlos Alcaraz arrived at Indian Wells full of doubt about his twisted right ankle. Image- Manila Bulletin

Spanish World No. 2 tennis player Carlos Alcaraz won the Indian Wells title for the second time after defeating Daniil Medvedev on Sunday. But Alcaraz's journey to defend his title was full of challenges. The young Spaniard, who has been struggling with an ankle problem, faced a tough battle against Medvedev in the final.

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Carlos Alcaraz arrived at Indian Wells full of doubt about his twisted right ankle. Image- Manila Bulletin
Carlos Alcaraz arrived at Indian Wells full of doubt about his twisted right ankle. Image- Manila Bulletin

"Winning this tournament means a lot to me because the week before the tournament began, I had a lot of doubts. I remember my first practice, it was 30 minutes, no movement. It was really tough for me because I thought I was not going to play my best, I was not feeling well with my ankle, so a lot of doubts for me. Once I stepped on to the court, I started to feel better. As I said after every match, it was feeling better and better, so really happy to win the tournament." Alcaraz said after Indian Wells final.

Alcaraz made a spectacular comeback after a difficult opening set in the Indian Wells final match. Medvedev was leading 6-5 in this set. However, Alcaraz bounced back through the tie-break to take a 7-5 lead. The story of the match looked different in the second set and Alcaraz defeated the world No. 4 to win his first title of the year. This is also his first title win since Wimbledon last summer.

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"After every match I was feeling better. I was getting more confident after every match. Winning a Master 1000 again, a really important tournament to win, gives you motivation to keep going." Alcaraz beat Jannik Sinner in a three-set semifinal after needing three sets to get out of his second-round match.

The 20-year-old Spaniard was returning from an ankle injury which forced him to retire from his opening match at the Rio Open last month. "I had a lot of nerves. It was difficult to start, but I started to play better. I calmed myself and controlled my emotions." Alcaraz said.

Alcaraz is only the sixth player to successfully defend the Indian Wells crown. He is also the first player since Novak Djokovic in 2016 to win Indian Wells twice in a row.

"It's definitely your court, you like it here. Hopefully you can one day let me play a little bit better here." Medvedev told Alcaraz during the victory ceremony.

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Daniil Medvedev Carlos Alcaraz