Boris Becker drops some harsh truth on Carlos Alcaraz

The former ATP No. 1 says the current ATP No. 2 will be fine long term.
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Boris Becker is a fantastic interview. He is often candid, though sometimes he seems to forget the facts, as he did during some parts of the excellent doc Boom! Boom! The World vs. Boris Becker. That doesn't make one appreciate the former ATP No. 1 any less, however. And he knows the sport of tennis extremely well, so when he discusses Carlos Alcaraz, we should listen.

The other thing that Becker has in common with Alcaraz is both understand the success and pressure that comes with winning Grand Slams by 20 years old. There is something about being so young and inherently naive about what to expect after one wins a major there is very few could ever comprehend. Becker in that way could probably help Alcaraz if the Spaniard were to ever ask the German for help.

Becker won Wimbledon at 17 years old. Carlos Alcaraz won the US Open at 20 years old and Wimbledon at the same age. There was a lot of hard work and a bunch of raw ability that went into winning those majors by both players. But even for someone closer to 30, winning at such a high level might be followed by a period of needing to relax and work less hard.

Boris Becker thinks Carlos Alcaraz lacks 'motivation' at times

This is what Becker thinks Alcaraz is struggling with currently. According to Holger Rune's current coach, Alcaraz might have missed a few training sessions The reason for this is a lack of motivation at times. Mind you, Becker would know better than I do. That said, I haven't heard of Carlos Alcaraz missing many training sessions and his issue seems to be that he goes so hard early in the year that by the end of the last two years, he is either injured or mentally fatigued.

In 2023, Alcaraz did not win a tournament after beating Novak Djokovic in five sets in the Wimbledon final. Jannik Sinner appeared to be better than Alcaraz at the end of 2023. He was at least more successful as Sinner won three tournaments from August through November and the Italian also defeated Djokovic twice in the span of two weeks in mid-November. Alcaraz did not seem to be lacking in motivation but he also wasn't as mentally ready to win as Sinner.

But in an interview with Punto de Break (translated from Spanish), Becker said, "My feeling has always been that when motivation goes down, the body suffers. If you skip some training sessions, the chances of getting injured or suffering physical discomfort are much greater...That's what happened to me when I was 20 and I think which is the case of Alcaraz as well. It seems logical to me for a young man who is so successful, it has happened to everyone."

Again, I am certainly not doubting Boris Becker. He has lived the kind of success Carlos Alcaraz has had and I certainly have not. But I do agree with Becker that Alcaraz will probably be even better in the future once he understands how to handle success a bit more. Hopefully, Sinner will also improve and Sinner versus Alcaraz could be tennis' great rivalry for the next 13 years or so.

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