In some way, Pablo Carreño (Gijón, 31 years old) has always played the mistake.
When he was a kid and left Gijón to enter the High Performance Center in Barcelona, he never imagined that he could really make a living from tennis, much less reach the level he has already reached, with seven elite trophies on the record, an Olympic bronze , a Davis Cup and several other awards;
later, an operation for a herniated disc in the lower back separated him from the circuit for seven months and surrounded his career with questions when he had barely begun to fly, just turned twenty-something;
and progressively the "highs" and the successes have been arriving, the last signed on the cement of Montreal and after a practically perfect week.
"If it's not, of course it's very close," says its main coach, Samuel López, from Cincinnati, waiting to meet with his player after the Spaniard -tutored on Canadian soil by José Antonio Sánchez de Luna, punctual relief – has achieved his most meritorious title on the circuit.
He counted six, three on land and as many on hard.
And, for that reason of continuing to be contrary and prolonging that confusion, he reaffirms himself in the land on which he built his tennis in Gijón, where the rain is a non-negotiable companion and where that tennis player who has returned to go from the background to the first like an exhalation.
Carreño wins his first Masters 1000 in Montreal
"When I arrived in Barcelona I started playing on clay, but I grew up on cement and that's why I feel so comfortable," Carreño said after beating Hubert Hurkacz (3-6, 6-3 and 6-3) and hitting again another bite, surely when least suspected.
“This year he has played well, but he has missed games that he should have won and that is hurting you.
He had match points in Indian Wells, in Miami, in Madrid... And that ultimately makes a dent.
But even so, we have always had a very clear objective.
When we start the preseason we set high goals, and fortunately there is a reward”, says López.
Suddenly, exactly one year after achieving a metal in Tokyo, another sting from Carreño.
His first Masters 1000. "It is not by chance", continues his coach, who far from recognizing the theory that the Japanese bronze could have reduced the tennis player's appetite, speaks of "maximum ambition" and affects the roadmap designed at the end from last year, focused again on making history: “We wanted to win something big, because Pablo [
in 2017] can do it and he wants to be at the top.
He never settles, he is a non-conformist.
He has worked for it, but this is tennis, and some things have been happening that make the road more difficult.
I have always believed in him, even more than he in himself.
Your coach: "You must repeat it more times"
Clinging to that
philosophy that López wields, the "game by game", Carreño has been building a high-carat tennis player with his journeyman profile, thorny for the strongest and capable of going far on a big stage.
He is a double semifinalist in New York, where he is aiming now after passing through Cincinnati this week – he debuts this Tuesday with Miomir Kecmanovic, a tough nut to crack – and continues to collect merits to prop up an important race.
With the exception of the route in the Godó (final) and the good pace interrupted in Bastad (semi-finals), the season had been elusive: first and second rounds, physical setbacks and more than half a year in the shade.
However, Carreño shines again.
“I have worked very hard to get here.
Not everyone has a Masters 1,000 in their career;
For example, David Ferrer was three in the world and only has one.
I know how difficult it is to win something like that.
I am 31 years old and I must enjoy it”, stresses the man from Gijón, promoted from 23rd to 14th place in the
“My team has done incredible mental and physical work with me lately.
I don't know how I did it.
They probably believed in me more than I did in myself and gave me the energy and strength to get here”, he adds, already registered among the 14 Spaniards who have managed to reach the top of a
“It has been an ideal week, but you must repeat this more times.
It has the level and the hunger.
He is very complete and if he gains confidence it is very difficult to overwhelm him;
Saving the distances, I compare him with that impassable Djokovic, almost impossible to overtake.
The only thing he has to do is what I have always told him: play big, ”says his coach.
14 SPANISH TROPHIES THIS SEASON
For five years, Carreño has trained at the Juan Carlos Ferrero Equelite in Villena (Alicante).
There he shares the day to day and a good friendship with Carlos Alcaraz, who witnessed the final together with those responsible for the academy and celebrated the title of his friend.
"More than deserved, happy for you!" Dedicated the young man from Murcia through social networks.
Carreño has joined other national players who have won a Masters 1000 such as Ferrer, Albert Costa, Félix Mantilla, Emilio Sánchez Vicario, Roberto Carretero, Albert Portas or Tommy Robredo;
two own Alcaraz, Alex Corretja and Sergi Bruguera;
and Carlos Moyà (3), Ferrero (4) and Rafael Nadal (36) distance themselves.
It had been 19 years (2003, with Ferrero and Mantilla) that two Spaniards had not been crowned in a thousand.
His title joins those obtained in this prolific 2022 by Nadal (4), Alcaraz (4), Roberto Bautista (2), Albert Ramos, Pedro Martínez and Paula Badosa.
That is, 13 male titles distributed among six representatives;
in this sense, Spain leads the list ahead of Russia (5), Italy (4) and the United States (4).
On the other hand, the Asturian is part of the list for the next Davis Cup match, between September 13 and 18 in Valencia.
There, Carreño will play the group stage against Serbia (Wednesday 14), Canada (Friday 16) and South Korea (Sunday 18).
As announced on Monday by the Royal Spanish Tennis Federation (RFET), together with him they will form Alcaraz, Bautista and Alejandro Davidovich.
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