Carlos Alcaraz and Daniel Medvedev will not be swayed by rankings, statistics or the lure of the world No. 1 when he competes for the Indian Wells ATP Masters 1000 crown on Sunday.
Alcaraz, the 19-year-old Spaniard who became the youngest number one after winning the US Open last year, can replace Novak Djokovic and return to the top with his third Masters 1000 title.
Medvedev, meanwhile, is riding a 19-match ATP winning streak in which he won three titles in three weeks in Rotterdam, Doha and Dubai.
Now that he is in the championship in a two-week match, Medvedev is the first player since Andy Murray in 2016 to reach the final four in five weeks.
For both, a first Indian Wells title is the goal that worries them.
“I know if I win tomorrow I will be number one,” Alcaraz said. “I’m going to try not to think about that, but just think about what I have to do.
“I have to make everything perfect, that’s all I’ll think about tomorrow.”
Similarly, Medvedev will not focus on any historical aspect of his schedule – only on expansion.
“When you listen to some of these numbers, it’s very interesting, but at the same time I know that we are going to win,” he said. “The most important thing is to try to win this tournament and to win these games.”
Medvedev won a late game 7-5, 7-6 (7/4) in the semi-final against Frances Tiafoe, needing eight points to put away the America ranks 16th.
Alcaraz won a tough first set and then won 7-6 (7/4), 6-3 over Italian Jannik Sinner.
Medvedev and Alcaraz said that their only previous meeting – Medvedev’s victory in the second round at Wimbledon in 2021 – was not a measure for this decision.
“Definitely not the same player as he is now,” Medvedev said. “Therefore, it will be like a first game between us in that we will go to the technique or the physicality or the tennis.
“It will be great to play against him.”
Added Alcaraz: “If I’m not mistaken, when I played against him he was number two in the world, I had just started playing in the tournament.
“Now it’s very different. It will be, I think, a very different game.”
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