Krueger Making Most Of His Opportunity To Compete In Delray Beach

Mitchell Krueger (photo: Andrew Patron/Delray Beach Open)

DELRAY BEACH, FLA./WASHINGTON, February 17, 2022 (by Michael Dickens)

American Mitchell Krueger may not be a household name on the ATP Tour worldwide, but if you follow the ATP Challenger Tour – especially when the circuit has events in the United States – chances are good you’ve heard of the 28-year-old from Fort Worth, Texas.

That’s because Krueger has won three Challenger championships, two of them last year in separate Atlantic Tire Championships events in Cary, N.C., and in 2019 at the Dallas Challenger. 

The 164th-ranked Krueger, who stands 6-feet-2-inches and turned pro in 2012 after rising to World No. 5 in the junior ranks, broke into the Top 200 five years ago. He achieved a career-high No. 147 last October on the strength of his two title-winning runs in Cary. In all competitions last year (16 Challengers and 9 ATP Tour), he compiled a 29-24 win-loss record. Among his 2022 wins were victories over three players in this year’s Delray Beach Open main draw: Jack Sock, Denis Kudla and Stefan Kozlov.


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Fast forward to this weeks at the Delray Beach Open by, Krueger made the main draw as one of four players who won two qualifying matches over the weekend. On Tuesday, in just his second ATP Tour main draw match of the season, Krueger scored just his fourth career tour-level main draw triumph when he beat No. 83 Jordan Thompson of Australia, 6-2, 6-4. It was long time coming for Krueger – nearly two years and 14 tour-level events later since his last last ATP Tour main draw victory.

Kruger was asked in press after beating Thompson what it meant for him to get his fourth tour-level win – and first of this year – especially after winning 85 percent of his first-serve points and saving all three break points he faced on his serve. He replied: “It’s something, obviously, I’m very aware of, how many matches I’ve even played at this level.

“For me, I know I can play at this level. I’ve beaten plenty of guys at this level. My three wins before this came at two Masters and a [Grand] Slam.”


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Indeed, Krueger twice has beaten Benoit Paire, in the first round of the Western & Southern Open at Cincinnati in 2017 and, again, at Indian Wells in 2018, both ATP Masters 1000 events. He also beat Pedro Sousa in the first round of the 2020 US Open after receiving a wild card into the main draw.

“It’s a matter of getting the opportunity to play in these events,” Krueger said.

Next, Krueger will oppose the World No. 26 and tournament No. 3 seed Grigor Dimitrov in a featured second-round match on Thursday evening.

“Obviously, I’ve never played him,” said Kruger. Then, with a hint of laughter in his voice, he added: “Ill try to get whatever info [on him] that I can. I guarantee you; I’ve seen him play more than he’s seen me play.”

“I’ve had three matches on these courts to get to this match. I’ve got that advantage going for me. Definitely, it won’t be easy; it’ll be a tough match. I’m expecting a battle.”