Jack Draper is into the second week of a Grand Slam for the first time in his career after defeating Michael Mmoh in four sets. This match was about the attack of Draper against the defensive play of Mmoh and the early signs showed that the American was more than capable of tiring the Brit out. However Draper didn’t fall for the trap as his explosive serve and forehand combination allowed him to be efficient as held serve comfortably in the early stages of the match.
The Brit was equally as effective on return as he tested Mmoh in the third game with the American responding with some big serves on big points. Meanwhile the American wildcard was attempting to take up different return positions but to no joy as Draper was securing service holds in under a minute.
This gave Draper the confidence boost he needed as powered to the break in the seventh game as he produced powerful forehands with a missed Mmoh volley securing a 4-3 lead. There was too much power and precision from Draper as he closed out the opening set on his fourth set point with another forehand winner as he clinched the opening set 6-4.
In the second set, Draper’s precision and power continued as he surged to a double break lead with two consecutive breaks of serve as he took a 4-0 lead. The American had looked tired having already played one five set match in the tournament and he desperately looked for alternative ways to outsmart the Brit’s powerful attacking play. Two service holds allowed Mmoh to take some confidence into the third set but Draper was equally as efficient on serve as he took a two sets to love lead.
The American’s back was against the wall having lost the opening two sets fairly comfortably but that freed up Mmoh’s mindset and he played more aggressive tennis which saw him secure the early break for a 2-0 lead. The crowd was firmly behind Mmoh as he fired up the feisty Grandstand crowd although Draper pushed for the break back in the fifth game with some smart and proactive tennis. However no break of serve came as the American served out the third set 6-3 to the delight of the home crowd.
After an electric end to the third set, the fourth started in just as energetic fashion as Mmoh broke in the opening game after an epic point saw Draper hit a backhand unforced error. The American fell to the floor in delight while Draper stared at his team in disbelief for a good minute. Disbelief soon turned into resilience as the Brit produced a sensational return game to break back immediately as the set was level at 1-1.
The match evolved into a tense contest between two fatigued players as they threw everything at a crucial fourth set. In the end it was Draper who raised his level when it really mattered as a powerful forehand winner secured the break for a 4-2 lead. The Brit was desperate to win the match in four sets as he was slowly starting to run out of energy and ideas.
A tight last service game was edged out by Draper as he kept his composure to save break point as he closed out the win to secure his place in the last 16 of the US Open.
Jack Draper v Andrey Rublev  | H2H & Match Fundamentals
Jack Draper v Andrey Rublev 
H2H: Rublev leads 2-0
US Open 2023
New York, USA
Prize Money: $284,000
Second on Louis Armstrong Stadium (17:30 BST)
Sky/Now TV Subscription Required
Next for Draper is eighth seed Andrey Rublev who is looking to reach his second consecutive US Open quarter-final.
Draper has been the more efficient player on return but will need to be wary of Rublev’s serving consistency.
Playing Styles and Prediction
Since winning the Bastad title, Rublev has been in poor form and was in desperate need of some confidence heading into the US Open. However Rublev’s second round win over Gael Monfils seems to have elevated the world number eight’s level as he finally looks to reach a Grand Slam final in New York.
Draper will look to continue his aggressiveness on return as he looks to target Rublev’s backhand and use variety to catch Rublev off guard. Meanwhile Rublev will look to use his forehand to put Draper on the back foot and force the Brit into unforced errors. This will be a tight match with both players looking to play attacking tennis. In the end Rublev should have too much quality and stamina for Draper in what should be a great experience for the 21 year-old.
Prediction: Rublev in four sets.
Carlos Alcaraz  def Dan Evans  6-2 6-3 4-6 6-3; Matteo Arnaldi def Cameron Norrie  6-3 6-4 6-3
As Draper thinks about the last 16, it was disappointment for Dan Evans and Cameron Norrie as they both had contrasting third round defeats. Evans put in a resilient display as he lost in four sets to defending champion Carlos Alcaraz.
After being dominated in the first two sets, Evans raised his level and played some of the best tennis of his season to take the third set over the world number one. However a stunning forehand pass saw Alcaraz break for a 4-2 lead in the fourth set with the Spaniard closing out the win but there are still plenty of positives for Evans to take heading into the rest of the season.
However the same can’t be said for Norrie who was outclassed by Matteo Arnaldi in straight sets. Norrie was in woeful form as he was broken on five occasions in a convincing straight sets defeat that leaves him with a lot of reflecting to do ahead of the rest of the season.
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