APRIL 21 - MAY 4, 2025

Young ATP talents

The Mutua Madrid Open has been lucky enough to witness some of the great talents of tennis enter its winners’ circle before the age of 22. Over the last two decades of the Spanish ATP Masters 1000, we can find examples of this in home players Rafa Nadal (2005) and Carlos Alcaraz (2022 and 2023), and in Germany’s Alexander Zverev (2018).

For this reason, some of the attention in the Caja Mágica’s will be focused on the young generation who are making names for themselves on the ATP Tour, with their brash and fearless brand of tennis that never fails to have the Madrid fans on the edges of their seats. This batch of fledgling stars includes some who have already made it, and others who are determined to get there.


Carlos Alcaraz

The champion of the last two editions of the Mutua Madrid Open is back on a stage where he has managed to create a perfect symbiosis. A prophet in his own land before the age of 20, for Alcaraz, the Spanish capital also represents a trampoline into his successful career.

The Murcia native’s memorable triumphs against Rafa Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Alexander Zverev in the Manolo Santana Stadium earned him the crown for the first time in 2022. The victory proved to be a sign of things to come, as later that year he would go on to win his first Grand Slam title at the US Open and to climb to the world number one spot for the first time.

Defending his title in the Caja Mágica a year later (2023) also forged the path for his first Wimbledon title. At this year’s event, Alcaraz will be bidding to become the first player in history to string together three titles in Madrid.


Jannik Sinner

The Italian has become something of a sensation in 2024. The newly crowned Australian Open champion arrives in Madrid, after two years away, as one of the biggest attractions in the draw. He will now be hoping to better his second and third round finishes in the Caja Mágica in 2021 and 2022.

Sinner has kept up the fine form from late in 2023 that allowed him to open his ATP Masters 1000 account in Canada, reach the final of the Nitto ATP Finals in Turin, and lead Italy to its second ever Davis Cup.

The future of tennis is here and, alongside Alcaraz, Sinner is at the forefront of an entire generation who are jostling to become the new idols and superstars as they bid to take the game to the next level.


Holger Rune

The precocious Dane has burst onto the ATP Tour. The 2019 Junior French Open champion will be making his second appearance in Madrid this year after reaching the third round last season. The finals he played in Monte Carlo and Rome prove he will be a man to watch on the Caja Mágica clay.

Two consecutive years reaching the quarterfinals of the season’s second Grand Slam also provide plenty of reason to keep an eye on Rune on this surface. Although his only Masters 1000 title came on indoor hardcourt in Paris-Bercy (2022), the Scandinavian’s street-fighting style means he is surely among the favourites.


Ben Shelton

He is the great hope of an American men’s tennis that is longing for its next Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi, Jimmy Connors, John McEnroe, Jim Courier or Arthur Ashe.

The player from Atlanta broke new ground at last year’s US Open by reaching the semifinals and came close to usurping Andy Roddick (2003) as its last home champion, twenty years later at Flushing Meadows.

Shelton’s ferocious serve is actually reminiscent of A-Rod’s and it is one of the main weapons for a player who is realising the American dream by coming straight out of University tennis and breaking through on the ATP Tour.


Arthur Fils

France has long been a conveyor belt providing world tennis with young players replete with talent and class. Fils is another example of this and, despite being the youngest of the next generation to follow at this year’s Mutua Madrid Open at just 19 years of age, his rise has caught everybody’s eye.

Despite failing to get through qualies on his first appearance in the Caja Mágica, the Frenchman opened his account with an ATP 250 title in Lyon a few weeks later before reaching the final in Antwerp. The cherry on the cake came at the NextGen ATP Finals, where a stunning performance earned him a place in the final and ‘Newcomer of the Year’ at the ATP Awards.

In addition, Fils has already turned heads with wins over Grand Slam champions such as Switzerland’s Stan Wawrinka (Marseille 2023), and Top 10 players of the likes of Stefanos Tsitsipas (Antwerp 2023) and Casper Ruud (Hamburg 2023).