Britain’s Jack Draper was delighted after he won his first ATP meeting against Andy Murray in the third round of the Indian Wells. The youngster bested the veteran in straight sets 7-6, 6-2 to extend his dream run in his debut BNP Paribas Open appearance.
The 21-year-old from Sutton revealed he grew up idolizing Andy Murray, who has been a big champion on the tour. In fact, Draper was able to save a set point on 5-6 with an ace and brought his best against his compatriot.
This is Draper’s second straight win against a Brit, after having beaten Daniel Evans in the second round 6-4, 6-2.
“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 practice with him often since 2019,” the 6-foot-4 lefty said post-match.
“He’s a really special person, a great champion, great human being and I’m privileged to play against him on this court.”
Draper added he wants to keep improving his game in the upcoming matches but admitted the conditions are quite slow in Indian Wells.
“I want to keep on trying to impose my game and use my weapons,” Draper said of his ventures forward. “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.”
The youngster will take on the World No.2 Carlos Alcaraz but feels his wins against Daniel Evans and Andy Murray have been confidence boosters for him.
“Beating Dan and Andy, that’s about as much confidence as I’d need for that match,” he said. “Carlos is another level up, he’s been No 1 in the world, had an exceptional year last year, so it would be amazing to play him again in another real battle.”
Alcaraz had beaten Draper last October in Basel in three sets.