Miami [US], March 24 (ANI): Former world No, 3 Guillermo Coria said he is in awe with World No. 1 Carlos Alcaraz's drop shot, even though the Argentine is famous for one of his signature moves: the drop shot.
Top seed Alcaraz is the defending champion in Miami Open as he aims to back up his Indian Wells title and complete the coveted 'Sunshine Double'. The Spaniard will play Facundo Bagnis on Friday.
"Alcaraz's drop shot is amazing. He's a very intelligent player, who reads the game very well. He plays drop shots right when they should be played. He always sets up well and, best of all, he disguises it so well," Coria told ATPTour.com.
"That makes it even more complete. I'm in awe of how he plays drop shots. I love and celebrate the fact that there's a player with so much potential who has such a good drop shot," he added.
The most amazing thing is that Alcaraz can do it on any surface. Even on fast courts, where the ball bounces the most, an opponent's chances of reaching it are increased. Alcaraz is also brave enough to use this weapon under extreme duress when his nerves are frayed.
"I would put him right up there. Andy Murray also has a very good one, as does Djokovic. They both use it as a tool to surprise the opponent. Those two and Alcaraz are the players I enjoy most when they play drop shots," Coria said.
"It really is a great compliment for him to say that I'm one of the best at that. It's incredible to hear that from Guillermo. It's true that it's a weapon I try to use quite a lot. I have very powerful shots, and combining them with the drop shot makes for a very good combination. I've had it since I was little, it's something that comes from within," he added.
Statistics support him. The drop shot was crucial in Alcaraz's title defence at the 2022 ATP Masters 1000 in Miami. The Spaniard played 50 drop shots in six matches during the tournament and won 70% of them. In fact, he won 16 of those points in a row in his second-round match (d. Cilic) and in the quarterfinals (d. Kecmanovic).
Coria, who retired in 2009 and currently captains the Argentine Davis Cup team, explains why Alcaraz has such a high success rate when he decides to play a drop shot.
"When his opponent is on the defence, you can't tell if Alcaraz is going to hit the ball on one side or the other, or if he's going to play a drop shot. In general, they are expecting the ball to come back hard. That's why it's a surprise," the 41-year-old Argentine said.
"Also, he hits it very well on both sides, with his backhand and forehand. And he has a very good drop shot with both. My drop shots, for example, were on my forehand. I very rarely played it on my backhand," he added. (ANI)