APRIL 21 - MAY 4, 2025

Ten moments in Spanish tennis

The home players have produced plenty of moments of brilliance during the Mutua Madrid Open’s two decades of history. From the first Spanish champion Juan Carlos Ferrero to the youngest of them all, Carlos Alcaraz, without forgetting Rafa Nadal himself.


Anabel Medina, Carla Suárez, Garbiñe Muruguza, Paula Badosa, Sara Sorribes, Nicolás Almagro, Pablo Andújar, Roberto Bautista and Marcel Granollers are just some of the other members of the Spanish Armada who have left their footprints in the clay of the Caja Mágica, just as Carlos Moyà and David Ferrer did before them.

2003: The first at home

The local fans would only have to wait until the second edition of the Spanish Masters 1000, which was still on hard court under the roof of the Madrid Arena at the time, to see one of their own take the crown. Juan Carlos Ferrero capped off a dream 2003 season by adding Madrid to his title from Roland Garros, having also reached the US Open final and climbed to the pinnacle of the rankings.


It would never have happened if the Valencian hadn’t saved a match point in his opener against Wayne Ferreira (6-3, 2-6, 7-6[4]). He would go on to beat Félix Mantilla (7-6[2], 7-6[0]) and Paradorn Srichaphan (6-4, 6-2) without losing a set, before stamping his pass to the final by taking down Roger Federer (6-4, 4-6, 6-4) and lifting the trophy after sinking Nicolás Massú (6-3, 6-4, 6-3).


2005-2017: King of the finals

With a return of five wins and only three losses, Rafa Nadal has played more Mutua Madrid Open finals than any other tennis player. In fact, his haul of finals is double that of his nearest challenger, Simona Halep, who has played in four (2014, 2016, 2017 and 2019). The Mallorcan laid the foundations for his legend in the Spanish capital with an epic comeback in the 2005 final against Ivan Ljubicic (3-6, 2-6, 6-3, 6-4, 7-6[3]).


In 2010, the Manacor native got his revenge in the Caja Mágica on Federer (6-4, 7-6[5]), who had beaten him in the decider one year earlier (6-4, 6-4). In 2011, Novak Djokovic kept him away from the title (7-5, 6-4), but it was his again in 2013 (6-2, 6-4 vs. Stan Wawrinka) and 2014 (2-6, 6-4, 3-0 Ret. vs. Kei Nishikori). The following year, Andy Murray made sure he was unable to make it three on the bounce (6-3, 6-2), but Nadal would win the title again in 2017 (7-6[8], 6-4 vs. Dominic Thiem) to give him the five of a kind that makes him the king of the clay in the Spanish capital.


2010 and 2019: From Madrid to eternity

Two of the most emotional and special moments of the Mutua Madrid Open were the farewells of two of Spanish tennis’ biggest names. Carlos Moyà and David Ferrer chose to bring their careers to an end in the Caja Mágica, where they would receive a warm and heartfelt homage from their fans.


The French Open champion and first Spanish world number one in the Open Era played Benjamin Becker in the Manolo Santana Stadium in the last of his 894 matches on the ATP Tour (2010). For his part, the Roland Garros finalist and ex-world number three had his swansong at the 2019 event, where he produced career victory 734 against Bautista (6-4, 4-6, 6-4) before one last hurrah against Alexander Zverev (6-4, 6-1).


2010-2014: Semifinals ‘made in Spain’

There has been an all-Spanish semifinal at the Spanish capital’s Masters 1000 on three occasions. Nicolás Almagro (2010), Pablo Andújar (2013) and Roberto Bautista (2014) all crossed paths with Nadal in the penultimate round, all failed to beat him.


The Murcia native forced a comeback from the five-time Caja Mágica champion (4-6, 6-2, 6-2) having already left world No. 4 Robin Söderling in his wake. The player from Cuenca, who was playing on a wildcard, upset Top 10 player Marin Cilic, John Isner and Kei Nishikori before Nadal took it upon himself to stop him in his tracks (6-0, 6-4). Castellon’s Bautista proved no better equipped to handle the holder of five crowns (6-4, 6-3).


2013: The world number one on the ropes

Anabel Medina had Serena Williams digging deep in 2013. The Torrent native, the first Spanish woman to reach the quarterfinals at the Mutua Madrid Open had already knocked out Stefanie Vögele, Madison Keys and Yaroslava Shvedova before she took on the might of the world number one in the Manolo Santana Stadium.


The clash did not disappoint and was decided in a tight third set that eventually fell to the world number one (6-3, 0-6, 7-5). The home player had the fans in raptures when she joined tennis greats Justin Henin and Venus Williams, Serena’s sister, as the only players to have ‘bagelled’ the American legend.


2014-2015: Dream duo

Garbiñe Muguruza and Carla Suárez proved that Spanish tennis is also a force to be reckoned with in the doubles format. The two best home WTA players of their time formed a team that, two years in a row, fell at the final hurdle in the Mutua Madrid Open.


In 2014 they enjoyed a spectacular campaign, in which they saw off the fourth, sixth and first seeds before Grand Slam champions Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci had their way with them (6-4, 6-3). A year later they were back and came even closer to the title against Casey Dellacqua and Yaroslava Shvedova, but they were unable to complete their comeback (6-3, 6-7[4], 10-5).


2021: The only doubles champion

Marcel Granollers showed why he is known as a doubles specialist. The Spaniard has reached no fewer than five Grand Slam finals during his career, and he is the first and only Spanish Mutua Madrid Open doubles champion, alongside Horacio Zeballos in 2021.


The Spanish-Argentine duo produced a high-class victory against Pierre-Hughes Herbert and Nicolas Mahut (7-6[3], 6-2) in the quarterfinals and came back to win the title against Croatian pair Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic (1-6, 6-3, 10-8).


2021: Comeback after comeback

Paula Badosa raised the bar for the Spanish women at the Mutua Madrid Open by reaching the semifinals in 2021. The Catalonian made the most of an invitation from the organisers, enjoying an epic run to the last four, much to the delight of the Madrid fans.


In the second round she fought back to beat Jil Teichmann (5-7, 6-1, 6-2), then did the same to Anastasija Sevastova (6-7[0], 7-6[3], 6-0), before knocking out Top 10 player Belinda Bencic in the quarters (6-4, 7-5). Only world number one Ashleigh Barty was able to stop her from reaching the decider (6-4, 6-3).


2022: Coming of age

At 19 years and 3 days old, Carlos Alcaraz became the youngest player to win the Mutua Madrid Open (2022). The Murcia native beat the record set in 2005 by Rafa Nadal, when he conquered the Spanish capital at the age of 19 years and 5 months.


Alcaraz completed an unbelievable week in the Caja Mágica, defeating the Mallorcan himself in the quarterfinals (6-2, 1-6, 6-3) and Djokovic in the semis (6-7[5], 7-5, 7-6[5]). After that three-and-a-half-hour battle, the Spaniard managed to recover and produce his A-game against Alexander Zverev to claim the crown in the Manolo Santana Stadium (6-3, 6-1).


2022: Grit and magic

Sara Sorribes’ foray in Madrid in 2022 will be remembered for many a year. The player from Castellon became the fourth Spanish woman to reach the Mutua Madrid Open quarterfinals with hard-fought wins that showed off her spirit and determination.


Sorribes beat the then French Open runner-up Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in her opener (6-3, 2-6, 6-3). In the second round she toppled Naomi Osaka, a four-time Grand Slam champion (6-3, 6-1). Another win against Daria Kasatkina (6-4, 1-6, 6-3) earned her a place in the last eight, where Jessica Pegula, who made it to the final in the Caja Mágica, managed to rouse her from her dream run in the Spanish capital (6-4, 6-2).