beat to the punch


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Related to beat to the punch: come in handy, get the ball rolling, worse for wear

beat someone to the punch

 and beat someone to the draw
Fig. to do something before someone else does it. I wanted to have the new car, but Sally beat me to the punch. I planned to write a book about using the new software program, but someone else beat me to the draw.
See also: beat, punch

beat somebody to the punch

to do something before someone else can do it I wanted to give my mother a camera, but my brother beat me to the punch.
Etymology: from boxing, in which good fighters are quick to react by punching (hitting) the other fighter before they are hit
See also: beat, punch

beat somebody to the punch

  (American)
to do something before someone else does it I was thinking of applying for that job but Carol beat me to the punch.
See also: beat, punch