WATCH: British teenager Jack Draper collapses on court at Miami Open
British teenager Jack Draper dramatically collapsed on his ATP Tour debut, as he was forced to return from his opening mach at the Miami Open.
The 19-year-old Londoner was given a wild card for one of the biggest events outside of the grand slams and showed the talent that makes him one of Britain’s hottest prospects, but he was unable to cope with the hot and humid conditions.
His first-round clash against Kakazh Mikhail Kukushkin was gruelling from the start and Draper, a former Wimbledon junior finalist, began to look increasingly troubled physically.
He called the doctor trailing 6-5 and had his heart rate and blood pressure taken. He carried on but down set point in the next game he moved for a backhand then fell to the floor, later saying he tripped due to feeling dizzy.
He was swiftly attended to by medics and was sitting up with an ice pack on his neck when the umpire called the match for Kukushkin.
Draper was able to walk off court and, speaking several hours later, said: “I think the conditions got on top of me a little bit today and physically I just need to improve more. I’ve got a lot to improve on but my level seems to be pretty close.”
The teenager revealed, like Andy Murray, he caught coronavirus in January after training at the National Tennis Centre, while injuries and the restrictions of the pandemic have stalled his progress.
Draper is determined to push forward in 2021, saying: “This year I’ve really got the desire and the motivation to be a great tennis player. There’s been times in the past where maybe I’ve been a bit apprehensive about that. But as I’ve got older I’ve started to really realise what I’m capable of.”
Oh my goodness!! Dramatic scenes on court as Jack Draper collapses on court. Very hot & humid day in Miami. Jack looks ok after the Doc has been on court but it’s match over. https://t.co/BHr5j47R08
— Jo Durie (@Jodurie) March 25, 2021
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