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cinch Championships 2024: Jack Draper beaten in tight quarter-final clash against Tommy Paul


Jack Draper’s ambitions of making it back-to-back ATP Tour titles ended in quarter-final defeat at the cinch Championships after the British No.1 lost to Tommy Paul 6-3, 5-7, 6-4.

Yesterday, the 22-year-old took down top seed and defending champion Carlos Alcaraz 7-6(3), 6-3 in his second round match - ultimately igniting the hopes of thousands of British tennis fans who were hoping to see a first British singles winner at the Queen's Club since Andy Murray last claimed the trophy in 2016.

24 hours on from capturing the biggest win of his career, Draper faced a different threat in the form of the world No.13 who would eventually go on to upset the rising star on his own turf and snap his seven match winning streak on the grass.

Reflecting on his loss, Draper said, “I thought Tommy came out playing really well, he played a great match throughout. I felt conditions were a bit different today, it was quite windy and swirly and was quite tough to play the type of tennis I wanted to play but we have to deal with that, it’s part of the game.

“I felt like I was having to really get myself going today, maybe because the last couple of weeks were catching up on me but credit to Tommy, he was the better player today.”

The youngster has embarked on a whirlwind couple of weeks, which has seen him become British No.1 for the first time in his career, bring home his first ATP Tour level title at the Boss Open in Stuttgart and be selected to represent Great Britain at his first Olympic games.

“Physically my body has been great but it just becomes mentally quite taxing having to go day after day. I finished Stuttgart on Sunday and got here very late on Sunday, had training then went again (played a match) on Tuesday.

"Obviously the match yesterday (against Alcaraz), it felt like there was quite a lot of emotional energy invested in that. I felt quite flat at times (today) and I think that showed in my decision making at certain times in the match.

“I played a few more sloppy shots than I wanted to but at the end of the day if I want to be one of the best players in the world then I have to keep on backing up my performances and getting used to going deep every week."

Paul stands strong 💪 | Highlights - Tommy Paul v Jack Draper | cinch Championships 2024 | LTA

The Brit entered the quarter-final battle with a 3-1 lead over Paul in the head to head, but today marked their first meeting on grass.

After dropping the opening set, the big-serving lefty looked to dial up the heat late in the second set and it paid off as he sprinted towards a break to love to force a deciding set.

The Brit and American fought toe-to-toe in the third, with little separating the two in terms of quality. However, Paul capitalised from the Brit's brief lapse in concentration as he broke midway through the set before eventually going on to see out the win. 

Paul is now the last seed standing in this year's main draw.

Despite missing out on the chance to compete in his maiden cinch Championships semi-final, the Brit will leave West London with the confidence and knowledge that he can beat the world's best heading into the penultimate Grand Slam of the season at The Championships, Wimbledon.

The third major of the season will also see Draper enter as a seeded player at a Slam for the first time, after the youngster clocked a new career-high ranking of world No.31 - allowing him to kick-start his reign as British No.1 in extraordinary fashion.

Friday's action at the cinch Championships also saw British doubles stars Neal Skupski and Joe Salisbury go head-to-head in their quarter-final match.

Skupski, who has teamed up with New Zealand's Michael Venus for the British grass court swing, came through a tight battle against Salisbury and Rajeev Ram to eventually prevail 7-6(5), 7-6(6).

They'll now look to book their place in Sunday's mens doubles final when they take on reigning champions Ivan Dodig and Austin Kraijeck tomorrow afternoon.

Follow along with all the latest results and updates from the 2024 cinch Championships

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