There was naturally a lot of question marks for the Spaniard coming into this encounter. He had not played for a relatively long period of time, he was debuting at a brand new tournament for the very first time and there would be obvious adjustments to make to the typically quicker conditions at the China Open.
Alcaraz erased any concern fairly early on, though. He shook off the rust within the first couple of games, played with excellent controlled aggression for long periods, and in the end he limited Yannick Hanfmann's potentially dangerous game to great effect.
Alcaraz was positive about his level of play after delivering a superb performance in his first match at the China Open.
"I'm really happy to be able to win this match in straight sets. Yannick's playing great. He's a really dangerous player, big shots. He was playing big bombs in this match so I had to be really focussed, trying to not let him dominate the match. I tried to be really focussed on every part of my game. I have to improve a little bit so I'm really happy to do it and have another chance to be better in the next round."
The Spaniard also shared how the Chinese public has been very welcoming as he competes in China for the first time.
"Hopefully I have a lot of years to come here to China. Creating my chapter here in China would be great for me. To finally be able to come here to China and show my tennis in front of the Chinese people is something that I wanted a long time ago and I'm really happy to do it, hopefully the first of many here."
The biggest incentive for Alcaraz in the remaining weeks of the season is to finish the year as the World No.1 and capitalize on Djokovic's shorter schedule. But in the short term, he has Lorenzo Musetti to worry about, who already has a win to his name against the Spaniard, albeit on the slower surface of the red clay of Hamburg.