Queen's Club: Jack Draper stuns defending champion Carlos Alcaraz to lay down Wimbledon marker

Joy: Jack Draper (Action Images via Reuters)
Joy: Jack Draper (Action Images via Reuters)

Jack Draper had promised all-out attack to take on and beat the best players in the world at the start of the week.

And he duly delivered on that pledge in the second round at Queen’s Club to knock out defending champion Carlos Alcaraz on Thursday in his first tournament since winning the French Open.

Big serves, aggressive groundstrokes and rushes to the net unsettled the Spaniard, who was simply outplayed by a player tipped by many to join Alcaraz towards the very top of the world rankings.

It continued Draper’s fine form on the grass having won his first ATP Tour title on the surface in Stuttgart last week.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

He got the only break of the match midway through the second set and had three match points to break once again to seal the match.

But Alcaraz recovered and duly won the first two points on the Draper serve as he briefly wobbled when trying to hold out the match.

But the newly crowned British No1 hit five strong subsequent serves for a 7-6, 6-3 win, probably the best of his career bearing in mind he was facing the defending champion but also last year’s Wimbledon winner.

After celebrating in front of 9,000 fans with a flying fist pump, he said: “It was a really tough match. Carlos is defending champion here, won at Wimbledon last year, and an incredible talent. I had to come out and play really well and luckily I did today.

 (Getty Images for LTA)
(Getty Images for LTA)

“There’s no place I’d rather be right now than with my family, friends and British support.”

On the same court where Andy Murray had hobbled out of the tournament and potentially his career as a top-flight player with a back injury, it felt like a passing of the British tennis baton.

The 21-year-old will now fancy his chances of winning a tournament he has watched from the stands since being a child.

It will also aid his chances of being seeded for Wimbledon when it gets under way a week on Monday. He is currently ranked 31st in the world and now faces No5 seed Tommy Paul in the quarter-finals.