The stars came out Sunday at the 2016 Miami Open, with Novak Djokovic, Angelique Kerber, Garbine Muguruza and Tomas Berdych among those in action in Key Biscayne, Florida.
Here's a look at how Sunday's action unfolded.
|Men's Singles Results—Sunday, March 27|
|Novak Djokovic  def. Joao Sousa ||6-4, 6-1|
|Tomas Berdych  def. Steve Johnson ||6-3, 6-7 (6), 6-3|
|Richard Gasquet  def. Benoit Paire ||6-3, 6-0|
|Gilles Simon  def. Marin Cilic ||6-3, 6-7 (4), 6-3|
|Dominic Thiem  def. Yoshihito Nishioka||6-2, 6-2|
|David Goffin  def. Viktor Troicki ||6-1, 6-1|
|Horacio Zeballos def. Fernando Verdasco||1-6, 6-4, 7-6 (4)|
|Lucas Pouille def. David Ferrer ||6-7 (1), 7-6 (4), 7-5|
Djokovic maintained his hot streak with a 6-4, 6-1 win over Joao Sousa. The match followed the norm for Djokovic, as Sousa did everything he could against the world's No. 1 player—to little effect.
The first point in the seventh game of the match illustrated how Djokovic's defense and mobility allowed him to fight off Sousa's best shots:
Especially after Rafael Nadal's exit from the tournament, anything other than a Djokovic win in the Miami Open will be a shock.
A day after Nadal retired in the third set against Damir Dzumhur, the men's draw featured little in the way of surprises. Eleventh-seeded Marin Cilic lost to Gilles Simon, the No. 18 seed, so it wasn't a massive upset. Simon also entered Sunday with a 4-1 head-to-head advantage in their previous five meetings.
Matt Cronin @TennisReporters
G Simon d M Cilic 63 67 63. Former US Open champ Cilic can be decent, but over the past 18 months he's been so-so. Hes not confident enough3/28/2016, 12:18:25 AM
All but one seeded player who was eliminated in men's singles Sunday lost to a higher-ranked opponent.
Berdych nearly fell victim to No. 31 Steve Johnson but pulled through after three sets, 6-3, 6-7 (6), 6-3. His serve allowed him to escape multiple close calls. He recorded 16 aces and saved all 10 of Johnson's break-point opportunities.
The one notable upset took place in the final match of the night as No. 8 David Ferrer was defeated by unseeded Lucas Pouille, 6-7 (1), 7-6 (4), 7-5. The victory was a milestone one for the Frenchman, per ATP Media Info:
ATP Media Info @ATPMediaInfo
.@la_pouille outlasts No 8 David Ferrer 67 76 75 in 2h, 45m @MiamiOpen to earn 1st career Top 10 win & 3rd Frenchman into 4R.3/28/2016, 4:05:28 AM
Pouille will try and keep his run alive in the fourth round against Simon.
|Women's Singles Results—Sunday, March 27|
|Angelique Kerber  def. Kiki Bertens||1-6, 6-2 3-0 (ret.)|
|Timea Babos def. Naomi Osaka||7-5, 6-0|
|Irina-Camelia Begu def. Kristyna Pliskova||7-5, 4-6, 6-4|
|Victoria Azarenka  def. Magda Linette||6-3, 6-0|
|Johanna Konta  def. Elena Vesnina||4-6, 6-1, 7-6 (3)|
|Monica Niculescu  def. Coco Vandeweghe||6-4, 6-1|
|Madison Keys  def. Roberta Vinci ||6-4, 6-4|
|Garbine Muguruza  def. Nicole Gibbs||6-1, 6-0|
Madison Keys sprung the day's biggest upset, toppling ninth-seeded Roberta Vinci in straight sets, 6-4, 6-4. According to the WTA's official website, Keys resides in Boca Raton, Florida, which is about an hour from Key Biscayne. After the match, the 21-year-old credited her familiarity with the climate in southern Florida for having a role in her victory, per the WTA:
"I think I played pretty well today 😉" -@Madison_Keys https://t.co/cZr41U7NVa3/27/2016, 9:15:34 PM
Keys was also excellent on serve—another point she mentioned in her post-match interview. She won 81 percent of her first-service points and an impressive 68 percent of her points on second serve and allowed just three break points in the entire match.
Of course, that's not to shortchange the rest of Keys' excellent all-around performance. According to TennisTV, she picked up 41 winners, compared to five for Vinci, and won 19 of her 21 points at the net.
Victoria Azarenka continued to build on her victory in Indian Wells, California. She breezed past qualifier Magda Linette in straight sets, 6-3, 6-0. Her win set up an intriguing fourth-round clash against Muguruza. Just don't try to use the word "rivalry" in relation to the two, per WTA Insider:
WTA Insider @WTA_insider
Journalist referred to Azarenka-Muguruza as a budding rivalry. Vika: “It’s funny to call it a rivalry since we never played each other."3/28/2016, 12:37:25 AM
Muguruza had little trouble in the third round against Nicole Gibbs, winning 6-1, 6-0. It was arguably the most comprehensive result on the women's side, as the No. 4 player in the world dominated Gibbs from start to finish. Muguruza earned six breaks and lost just 10 of her 35 service points.
Kerber received all she could handle from qualifier Kiki Bertens. Bertens took the first set 6-1 after winning the final six games, per the WTA:
Qualifier @KikiBertens reels off SIX straight games to take the opening set vs Kerber 6-1! #WTA https://t.co/ysSfsas3jP3/27/2016, 3:42:53 PM
Things quickly fell apart in the second set, however. Kerber recovered to even the match, and stomach issues forced Bertens to retire in the third, per Live Tennis.
Kerber commented on Bertens' retirement in her post-match interview with Nick McCarvel, per the WTA's official website:
I think Kiki's a great player. She played very well in the first set and I was not finding my rhythm at the beginning. But I was trying to stay in the match, trying to fight and play my game. At the end, of course, it's always sad when the opponent retires; I hope she gets very well very soon, but I'm happy to be in the next round.
|Miami Open Schedule—Monday, March 28|
|Starting at 11 a.m.||Agnieszka Radwanska  vs. Timea Bacsinszky ||Women's Singles|
|Not Before 1 p.m.||Serena Williams  vs. Svetlana Kuznetsova ||Women's Singles|
|----||Grigor Dimitrov  vs. Andy Murray ||Men's Singles|
|----||Gael Monfils  vs. Pablo Cuevas ||Men's Singles|
|Not Before 7:30 p.m.||Jack Sock  vs. Milos Raonic ||Men's Singles|
|Not Before 9 p.m.||Timea Babos vs. Angelique Kerber ||Women's Singles|
|Starting at 11 a.m.||Kei Nishikori  vs. Alexandr Dolgopolov ||Men's Singles|
|----||Roberto Bautista Agut vs. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga ||Men's Singles|
|Not Before 3 p.m.||Victoria Azarenka  vs. Garbine Muguruza ||Women's Singles|
|----||Tim Smyczek vs. Nick Kyrgios ||Men's Singles|
|Not Before 5 p.m.||Bob Bryan/Mike Bryan  vs. Roberto Bautista Agut/Viktor Troicki||Men's Doubles|
|----||Damir Dzumhur vs. Mikhail Kukushkin||Men's Singles|
Muguruza vs. Azarenka is the most intriguing matchup Monday. Muguruza hasn't had a great start to the 2016 season, having failed to advance past the third round in four of her five WTA events entering the Miami Open. Beating Azarenka would be a great way for her to turn her luck around.
Depending on which version of Serena Williams shows up, Svetlana Kuznetsova could push her hard. Williams is 8-2 in her career against the 30-year-old Russian, but the top seed has looked sluggish of late. She wasn't herself in Indian Wells, and she needed three sets to put Christina McHale away in the second round of the Miami Open.
On the men's side, No. 2 seed Andy Murray will face off with Grigor Dimitrov. They met twice last year at the Australian Open and Western & Southern Open. Dimitrov nearly upset Murray in Cincinnati before falling 4-6, 7-6 (3), 7-5. He could have a puncher's chance Monday.
The highest-ranked American, Jack Sock, may not be long for the Miami Open. He'll oppose Milos Raonic in the fourth round.
Sock won the first match between the two but is winless in their six subsequent meetings. Raonic looks to be turning a corner this year. He made the semifinals in Melbourne, Australia, and fell to Djokovic in the final at Indian Wells. His run should continue Monday.
The full order for Monday's play is available on the tournament's official website.
Stats courtesy of the tournament's official website unless otherwise noted.
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