Meet Wimbledon’s ‘honorary Brit’ who was meant to face Novak Djokovic today before walkover forced him out

Alex De Minaur of Australia celebrates during his match against Arthur Fils
Wimbledon quarter-finalist Alex de Minaur ‘feels a bit British’ (Picture: Getty)

Alex de Minaur was meant to face Novak Djokovic in the Wimbledon quarter-finals today before he was forced to pulled at the last minute due to injury, handing his opponent a walkover in the last four.

De Minaur is the boyfriend of British No.1 Katie Boulter and was aiming to reach a Grand Slam semi-final for the first time in his career in a Centre Court showdown before his dramatic late withdrawal on Wednesday.

There has been plenty of attention in the Australian tennis star, who broke into the world top 10 this year and is seeded ninth at the 2024 Championships.

De Minaur beat James Duckworth and Jaume Munar in his first two matches at Wimbledon 2024 before he had a walkover and then defeated Arthur Fils.

But who exactly is De Minaur and why was he an ‘honorary Brit’ at Wimbledon? Here’s everything you need to know…

Who is Alex de Minaur?

Alex de Minaur is a professional tennis player from Sydney, Australia. He’s enjoyed a fantastic year and had a career-high ranking of world No.7 in June.

Alex de Minaur of Australia and Novak Djokovic of Serbia pose at the net before their match during day six of the 2024 United Cup
Alex de Minaur beat Novak Djokovic at the United Cup in January (Picture: Getty)

The 25-year-old has won nine titles on the ATP Tour to date, including at the Libema Open and Mexican Open in 2024.

De Minaur beat Novak Djokovic at the United Cup this year as well as Rafael Nadal in Barcelona. He’s also got a 6-0 winning record against Andy Murray.

Seeded ninth in the Wimbledon 2024 men’s singles, De Minaur has been dating British No.1 tennis star Katie Boulter since March 2020.

What is a walkover in tennis and why is Alex de Minaur not facing Novak Djokovic?

A walkover occurs in tennis when a player is unable to compete before a match begins, leading to their opponent advancing without playing a single point.

Explaining why he was forced to hand Djokovic a walkover, Alex de Minaur said: ‘I felt a loud crack during the last three points of my match against [Arthur] Fils. [I] got a scan yesterday and it confirmed that this was the injury, with high risk of making it worse if I was to step on court.

‘I wanted to do anything I could to play [against Novak Djokovic]. I wanted to wake up today hoping that I would feel some sort of miracle and not feel it while I’m walking. They haven’t been able to tell me a definite recovery plan because it’s such a unique injury.

‘Based on pain right now, it can be anywhere from three to six weeks. It just depends on how quickly my body heals.’

Why is Alex de Minaur an honorary Brit?

Katie Boulter of Great Britain and partner Alex De Minaur of Australia interact against John Peers of Australia and partner Storm Hunter of Australia in the Mixed Doubles at Wimbledon 2023
Alex de Minaur is in a relationship with British star Katie Boulter (Picture: Getty)

With no British players left in the Wimbledon singles, Alex de Minaur vowed to switch alliances and admitted he felt ‘a bit British’ before he pulled out of his match against Novak Djokovic.

‘I’ll take all the support I can get,’ he said when he was still due to be facing Djokovic. ‘I can be the honorary Brit here at Wimbledon. I’ll take all the support I can get.

‘I do feel very loved out there, I must say. I always love coming here to Wimbledon and playing here. I always feel like I play some of my best tennis. Over the years I feel like the support I’ve had has grown significantly.

‘It’s a great feeling as a player to know you’ve got a lot of people in that stadium backing you in, having your back when essentially you’re so far away from home.

‘I do feel a bit British, definitely over the years I’ve learnt a lot more about the British culture thanks to Katie. I’m getting there!’

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