ATP

Dan Evans’ poor clay-court season continues with defeat to Brandon Nakashima

By Sports Desk April 15, 2024

Dan Evans’ poor clay-court season continued with a third consecutive defeat as he went down in straight sets to Brandon Nakashima in Barcelona.

Evans has endured a difficult 2024 as a whole, suffering a first-round exit at the Australian Open, and has now failed to make the quarter-finals in any of his nine tournaments this year.

After early exits on clay in Marrakesh and Monte Carlo, British number three Evans lost 6-7 (5) 2-6 to Nakashima in the Barcelona Open first round.

The contest lasted two hours and 10 minutes but after a closely-fought first set, where the pair exchanged two breaks each, American youngster Nakashima took control in the second to inflict another loss on world number 49 Evans.

Jack Draper fared better in Munich as he beat Vit Kopriva in three sets to reach the last 16 of the BMW Open and claim his 50th ATP Tour victory in the process.

Draper had lost narrowly to Hubert Hurkacz at the Monte-Carlo Masters last week, but bounced back to claim his first win of the season on clay.

 

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Sixth seed Draper breezed through the opening set in 28 minutes before he let a 3-1 lead slip in the second as Kopriva of the Czech Republic forced a decider after he decisively broke his opponent in the 12th game of the set.

After the British number two rediscovered his composure, Draper was able to claim two breaks at the start of the third set before he registered another in a 6-1 5-7 6-4 success.

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