Brit teenager Jack Draper to make Wimbledon debut against Novak Djokovic at Centre Court

Jack Draper watched from the crowd as Andy Murray won his first Wimbledon title in 2013 - now he's taking to the same court. Credit: PA

Teenager Jack Draper will make his Wimbledon debut against defending champion and world number one Novak Djokovic on Monday.

The Londoner was among the crowd as an 11-year-old in 2013 when Andy Murray ended Britain’s 77-year wait for a men’s singles champion at the All England Club.

Now Draper, 19, will be on that same lawn at Centre Court against the same opponent to make his debut after being given a wild card and then seeing his name paired with Djokovic.

“What an opportunity for me to play against the best player in the world,” he said.

“I’m definitely going to relish the opportunity and I’m really looking forward to it. To be on Wimbledon Centre Court opening the Championships with him is something that’s amazing.”

Jack Draper performed well at Queen's Club. Credit: PA

The teenager, ranked 253 in the world, claimed two notable scalps in top-40 duo Jannik Sinner and Alexander Bublik to reach the quarter-finals at Queen’s Club last week.

And while Djokovic admits he “does not know much” about the Londoner, he says he is taking him “very seriously”.

“I honestly do not know too much about Draper, I've seen him play a little bit in Queen's where he beat Sinner,” he said in the build-up to the match.

“I actually practiced with Sinner yesterday so I asked him couple questions about Draper's game.

“I know he's a lefty. I've seen him practice today a little bit. I have to do my homework, speak to more players, watch some of the videos of his most recent performances in Queen's on grass."

Defending champion Novak Djokovic says he is taking Jack Draper seriously. Credit: AP

The pair will play in front of half the normal crowd at 1.30pm and five-time Wimbledon winner Djokovic says he is wary of facing a “home player”.

“I'm sure there's going to be lot of support, a lot of people behind him.

“It's the first match on the Centre Court, new virgin grass. Obviously, coming in as defending champion, it's always a very special feeling for me.

“But it can be very dangerous, very tricky playing against a home favourite, someone that doesn't have much to lose, a guy who has beaten some really good players last week in Queen's.

“I'm taking him very seriously. Hopefully I'll be able to prepare myself for that match as best as possible and perform well.”

Murray, meanwhile, will face 24th seed Nikoloz Basilashvili in his first singles match at the All England Club since 2017 after Draper on Centre Court.