Shifting tides: Jack Draper dethrones Cameron Norrie as top-ranked Brit

Saturday, 15 June 2024 at 20:00
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Jack Draper is the new British No. 1 after reaching the final of the Stuttgart Open. The 22-year-old tennis player started the grass swing in the best possible way, making it to his third ATP tournament final and first on grass, where he will face former Wimbledon finalist Matteo Berrettini.
Draper began the week as world No. 40, but after a string of victories in Stuttgart, he ensured a rise to at least world No. 32, displacing Cameron Norrie as the highest-ranked Brit. He is just the sixth player to achieve this in this century.

 Draper climbs to British No. 1

The young player had a breakout year in 2022, winning 4 Challengers, reaching the third round of the US Open and the quarter-finals of the Canadian Open, and finishing the year with a notable 19-14 ATP record that allowed him to enter the top-40 for the first time at 21 years old.
However, 2023 was not as fortunate for the Londoner, as he suffered several injuries to his hip, shoulder, abdomen, and back, which even made him consider quitting tennis. However, in 2024, he has left the injuries behind and found more consistency on the Tour, as demonstrated by his performance on the grass in Stuttgart.
The tournament’s 6th seed defeated Sebastian Ofner (No. 52), Marcos Giron (No. 54), defending champion Frances Tiafoe (No. 28), and Brandon Nakashima (No. 70) in the semi-finals. After defeating ‘Big-Foe’, Draper ensured surpassing Cam Norrie in the rankings to become the new Brit No. 1: "It's something I've always wanted to be. It's a real honor to be in that position. Hopefully, I can carry the flag forward," Jack Draper stated.
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Jack Draper at 2022 Paris-Masters
The Brit secured world No. 32 by reaching the final and could climb one more spot to No. 31 if he wins the title. Draper will be in an ideal position to be one of the seeds at Wimbledon, avoiding higher-ranked opponents in the early rounds.
In the Stuttgart final, he will face a tough opponent in Matteo Berrettini, a grass specialist. The Italian, also affected by injuries, was a Wimbledon finalist in 2021 but hasn't returned to his previous consistency and is working his way back to the top of tennis.
Berrettini won the Stuttgart title in 2019 and 2022, aiming to become the second player to win the title three times after Rafael Nadal (2005, 2007, 2015). The Italian has already secured a rise of 30 positions from No. 95 to 65, and if he wins the title, he will be world No. 55.

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