Teenager Jack Draper set up an all-British quarter-final meeting with Cameron Norrie at Queens as he continued his stunning run by beating world No 39 Alexander Bublik.
Draper booked his place in the next round with a 7-6 (5) 7-6 (0) victory having fended off Jannik Sinner in round one with what had marked his first ATP Tour singles win.
The 19-year-old is the youngest Brit to reach an ATP quarter-final since Andy Murray in 2006, with his progress meaning Britain will be assured of at least one semi-finalist with Dan Evans and Murray both still in the tournament.
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No place like home 🇬🇧
19-year-old Jack Draper continues his dream week on home soil as he powers past Bublik 7-6(5), 7-6(0). He'll face compatriot Norrie next. 👀 #cinchChampionships pic.twitter.com/fV7Um35L8J
“The crowd got me over the line,” said Draper. “I’m glad I’ve been able to take the opportunity this week, I’m used to playing in front of one man and his dog on the Futures Tour. It definitely helps a lot.
“Alex is such a great player, you have to be on it every point with him. I didn’t have loads of expectations, beating Jannik gave me a massive boost and I didn’t start off as nervous.
“I’m just glad we are going to have one Brit in the semis. Cam’s a great player, good person, and I’ll be glad to share a court with him in the quarters.”
Draper took full advantage of a Bublik double-fault on the tie-break to take a close-fought first set with a huge backhand down the line. He then squandered the opportunity to serve for the match at 5-4, before again prevailing in the tie-break to march on in front of a home crowd.
Earlier in the day British No 2 Norrie sealed a place in his first Queen’s Club quarter-final with a 7-5 6-2 victory over Russian Aslan Karatsev, who had been a surprise semi-finalist at the Australian Open after entering as a qualifier in February.
Norrie broke for 3-2 on his way towards claiming the opening set, before Karatsev’s challenge was hindered in the second after he suffered a tough fall at the baseline.
First Queen's QF ✅
🇬🇧 @cam_norrie downs Karatsev 7-5, 6-2 to book his first quarter-final appearance at #cinchChampionships pic.twitter.com/1uxkSbxo6p
“It was a big step up, especially on returns,” Norrie said on-court. “I felt comfortable on returns and the first balls. He started strong and I managed to hold my serve and stay with him. It’s a big win for me and a big step up from the first round.
“I stayed focused, held my serve at the end and it’s nice to get through. All credit to him, he’s having a great year so it’s a huge win for me and another on grass.”
Federer falls in Halle
Roger Federer saw his pursuit of an 11th title at the Halle Open in Germany brought to an end by Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime.
The 20-year-old clinched a 4-6 6-3 6-2 victory over the 20-time Grand Slam champion, who made his return to competitive tennis on grass for the first time since 2019 on Monday with a straight-sets win against qualifier Ilya Ivashka.
Felix fires past Federer 👀
A huge win for 20 y/o 🇨🇦 @felixtennis who defeats 10x @ATPHalle champion Roger Federer 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 👏 #NoventiOpen pic.twitter.com/5tQfM7aQ2J
It is the first time in 18 appearances that Federer has failed to reach the quarter-finals in Halle, while for Auger-Aliassime, who idolised the fifth-seeded Swiss as a child, the result marked a fourth Top 10 win.
“I always thought that he would be gone (retired) when I arrived because he was already winning Grand Slams and I was only five years old so, I never expected to play him because I wanted to be a professional one day and didn’t think I would get to his level, and now to be on the same court as him and get the win is an honour for me.
“It is amazing, an amazing win, I didn’t expect this. Of course I came to the match wanting to win, but Roger was my idol like many of us growing up. So first of all it was a huge honour to play him before he retired, and to beat him is something amazing that I am have which is with me now. I am going to cherish that, it is a great moment for me and hopefully I can keep going like this in the tournament.”
"I never expected to play him."
Now @felixtennis has not just played, but defeated Roger Federer. #NoventiOpen pic.twitter.com/xe6eskcSJt
Fourth-seeded Andrey Rublev recorded a 6-4 6-4 win over Jordan Thompson and will now meet German Philipp Kohlschreiber in the third round after he overcame Corentin Moutet.
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