FEDERER INTO FOURTH ROUND, TSITSIPAS VS. SHAPOVALOV SET
By Tucker Verdi
Miami Gardens, FL — Roger Federer, the three-time Miami Open champion and No. 4 seed this year, is headed to the fourth round after a straight-sets win over Filip Krajinovic, 7-5, 6-3. The former World No. 1 needed only 90 minutes to dismiss his 103rd-ranked opponent, firing off 14 aces in the process.
“I thought it was a high, intense match in the first sort of, you know, ten games,” Federer told the press afterwards. “Then I was able to pull away. I had a 20-minute stretch where I was really able to stretch the lead, and that was key today.”
He will play No. 13 seed Daniil Medvedev in the round of 16 after the young Russian survived a grueling match with qualifier Reilly Opelka that was decided by three tiebreaks, 7-6(5), 6(5)-7, 7-6(0). Federer was asked about the matchup in his press conference following his win.
“I’m looking forward to the game. But I’m very impressed about his progress, you know. I must say, the last year has been unbelievable for him. I think he’s won three tournaments in the last seven months or so… very impressive.”
Other action in what is now Federer’s half has resulted in some intriguing matchups in the fourth round. Two NextGen stars — Stefanos Tsitsipas and Denis Shapovalov — will meet on Tuesday following their straight-set wins on Monday. No. seed Tsitsipas beat Leonardo Mayer, 6-4, 6-4, while No. 20 seed Shapovalov ended the run of qualifier Andrey Rublev, 6-3, 7-6(5).
The two have met twice in their fledgling careers thus far, with Shapovalov taking the first match at the 2018 Australian Open and Tsitsipas claiming the most recent in Monte Carlo last year.
Wild card David Ferrer’s farewell run at the 2019 Miami Open has come to an end at the hands of No. 28 seed Frances Tiafoe, who defeated him 5-7, 6-3, 6-3. The fiery Spaniard broke the young American to take the first set, expending a lot of energy in the process. Tiafoe would overpower the veteran in the second and third set, closing the book on his time at the Miami Open. A legend of the game, Ferrer will retire from professional tennis after the Madrid Masters in May.
Tiafoe will play No. 18 seed David Goffin next, Goffin having beaten No. 14 seed Marcos Cecchinato earlier on Monday, 6-4, 6-4. Goffin has a 3-0 head-to-head record against Tiafoe, with the wins getting progressively easier for the Belgian. Tiafoe will look to reverse that trend and make his first quarterfinal appearance at a Masters 1000 event.