World No. 99 Jack Draper earned one of his biggest career wins when he defeated World No. 14 Taylor Fritz in the first round of the 2022 Queen’s Club Championships. The Brit has already claimed 4 Challenger titles this year and is currently playing his third ATP Tour event of the season having earlier made appearances in the Masters event in Miami and Madrid.
Draper came to the limelight at the 2021 Wimbledon Championships when up against World No. 1 and 2-time defending champion Novak Djokovic, he won the first set sending a wave of surprise at the Center Court. While Djokovic rallied back strong to win the next three sets, it was nevertheless a good debut by then 19-year-old Draper.
“I will be competing for big titles against Carlos Alcaraz”: Jack Draper
With many teenagers on the rise at the moment, Draper talked about getting inspired by Spanish teen sensation and current World No. 7 Carlos Alcaraz who is currently the Tour leader with 4 titles to his name which include two Masters titles won in Miami and Madrid. Draper himself is in the race for qualifying for the 2022 NextGen Finals, with Alcaraz being last year’s champion and it just added motivation for the Brit.
“Alcaraz is very special. I see him as a benchmark kind of player. That is who I am judging myself against. His standards, his work rate and the way he plays. Watching someone like that you can learn a lot and I hope one day I will be competing for big titles against him. I know about the race, but I haven’t paid too much attention to it.
“Even though I am high up now, there are players who are in the top 50 and top 100 who have access to ATP Tour events where points are higher. I am not getting my hopes up because there are a lot of extremely good young players coming through,” said Draper in comments reported by Eurosport.
“I saw her do well and thought I could do that”: Jack Draper on Emma Raducanu’s US Open title
Since the last season, British tennis has seen some new names emerging who have solidified their places in the Top-100. 2021 US Open champion Emma Raducanu, 2021 Indian Wells Masters winner Cameron Norrie and the presence of Andy Murray along with Dan Evans have revived the hopes of the nation to hope once again for major trophies as this bunch of players have put in some good performances.
“It was a big motivation to see Emma win. Inspired me for sure. I think watching her do something special, made me think as someone in a tough place who was injured, I saw her do well and thought I could do that. Not to the same extent maybe as the women’s game is a bit younger, so you can do that a bit younger, but definitely shows you can go from a tough place to an incredible place quickly.
“I think British tennis is in a really exciting place at the moment. We’ve got a lot of players coming through and getting into the top 100. We had the three guys and myself now today. We’re in a really good place for sure. I know my tennis is good enough, it is just about getting everything else right. Being in Miami, Madrid and watching top players has given me a lot to learn from. Having the support from Dan, Andy and Cam and seeing what they are doing on tour is very motivating for me. I feel with their support I can go a long way as well,” concluded Jack.
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