California [US], March 14 (ANI): Jack Draper on Monday ended Andy Murray's winning run at Indian Wells to enter the Round of 16, with a 7-6 (8-6) 6-2 victory.
Draper won the pair's first ATP Head2Head meeting 7-6(6), 6-2 for his second straight victory against a fellow Briton in Indian Wells, having beaten Daniel Evans in the second round. He saved a set point with an ace at 5-6 in the first set. He then won the next four games to secure a historic victory on a double fault for his third break of the match.
Draper won just enough of the exciting exchanges in a two-hour encounter to win an up-and-down first set, then he pushed his advantage in the second set by relying on his left-handed serve and forehand. He also made great use of his attacks on the net, scoring 18 of his 26 points from the frontcourt.
Draper generated seven of the 10 break points in the first of two separate sets. With a commanding 3-1 lead, the Indian Wells rookie made a strong first impression. However, he dropped service to love as he tried to serve the set out at 5-4. The set moved to approach a tie-break after two deuce games from 5-5, with both guys alternating between magical and insane moments. After giving Murray a set point, Draper showed incredible fortitude to hit an ace and never trailed in a neck-and-neck tie-break.
Only two points were awarded to the returner in the opening five games of set two, in contrast, as serve dominance predominated. Everything changed when Draper broke for 4-2, and in the following game, he survived 15/40 before breaking from 40/0 to seal the victory.
Next up for Draper will be top seed Carlos Alcaraz, after the Spaniard defeated Tallon Griekspoor 7-6(4), 6-3.
"I've looked up to Andy since I was so young. I watched him win Wimbledon for the first time in 2013 and then I've had the opportunity to get to know him and practise with him often since 2019. He's a really special person, a great champion, great human being and I'm privileged to play against him on this court," ATP.com quoted Draper as saying.
"I want to keep on trying to impose my game and use my weapons. It's not easy in these conditions. It's quite slow tonight, the wind was a bit swirly and obviously playing against Andy, he makes it incredibly awkward for you. It's something I'm looking to improve with my coach and it's definitely starting to pay off a little bit more," Draper said. (ANI)