#NextGenATP Jack Draper plays Andrey Rublev rematch in Washington | TBEN | Tennis


#NextGenATP Briton Jack Draper has earned another shot at Top 10 star Andrey Rublev.

Three months ago, Rublev defeated Draper in a thrilling three-setter at the Mutua Madrid Open. They will meet again at the Citi Open after Draper knocked out American wildcard Stefan Kozlov 7-5, 6-2 in Washington on Monday.

“I think Stefan is playing a very awkward game. He’s one of the guys who really disrupts your rhythm. The first four games of the game I actually found it very difficult to get on the pitch. The conditions here, it’s quite lively and you have to play with a little more control,” Draper said in his interview on the court. “I think I adapted pretty well and in the end it became more of a physical battle here in these conditions.”

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Draper lost the first three games of the game and nearly went into a quick double break, only to get past the home favorite in one hour and 53 minutes. The 20-year-old saved four of the five breakpoints he encountered and hit 10 aces in his win.

The lefty is fifth in the Pepperstone ATP Race To Milan and is trying to qualify for the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals for the first time. Entering the season, he had won two competitions at tour level. This year alone, the Briton has claimed eight.

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It would have been nine had he passed Rublev in Madrid, where the favorite took the victory 2-6, 6-4, 7-5. Now the #NextGenATP shot gets another chance.

For Draper, this is all part of his process. He started the year No. 265 in the Pepperstone ATP rankings and is at a career-high World No. 81.

“For me, I know I’ve got the tennis,” Draper said. “It’s about developing my physicality and also dealing with these guys mentally. I think I still have a lot to improve.”

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