Before the late evening rains, six of the eight scheduled men’s matches were completed notably 2017 semifinalist Nick Kyrgios set up a young gun showdown with Alexander Zverev.
Kyrgios rolled Fabio Fognini, who also made the semifinals last year, by a score of 6-3, 6-3.
“We both competed,” Kyrgios said. “I just played a little better in some bigger points.
“I knew it was going to be tough. He has a lot of tricks up his sleeve and he’s very unpredictable,” Kyrgios added. “I knew I just had to serve well, play aggressive and keep the points short. When he gets in a rhythm he’s pretty dangerous.”
Kyrgios has lost just 11 games in two matches. Zverev had a much, much tougher test against former finalist David Ferrer edging the Spaniard 2-6, 6-2, 6-4.
After Zverev went up a quick break in the third, Ferrer got back but a critical double fault gave the German the final break he needed.
Kyrgios leads Zverev 3-2 winning in the quarters of Miami last year. Zverev got him back last month in Davis Cup.
In the Australia-Spain series, Fernando Verdasco put an end to Thanasi Kokkinakis’s run, besting the 21-year-old 3-6, 6-4, 7-6(4) in 2 hours, 54 minutes.
Kokkinakis was up a break in the third and led 3-0 in the final set breaker.
Kyrgios had this to say about Verdasco:
Round 1 pic.twitter.com/F7iIjbLGb2
— Paul (@PL_78_86) March 26, 2018
Then Verdasco fired back at Kyrgios since-delete tweet:
@NickKyrgios when you have the courage to put a tweet insulting another player you need to have the same to don’t delete it.
— Fernando Verdasco (@FerVerdasco) March 26, 2018
Could they meet in the semifinals on Friday? Wow! Next for Verdasco tomorrow is countryman Pablo Carreno Busta who eased past American Steve Johnson.
No. 6 Kevin Anderson scored a 4-6, 6-2, 6-3 win No. 32 Karen Khachanov. He’ll await the rain-delayed winner between Tomas Berdych and Frances Taifoe.
Denis Shapovalov held off Sam Querrey in a thriller 6-3, 3-6, 7-5. Querrey blew a break lead and several more breaks chances in the third to the Canadian who is playing is first Miami Open.
“It was a really tough match and I just fought for every point and I’m really happy to get the win,” Shapovalov said. “Sam’s such an incredible player, so it’s a huge win for me.”
“I wasn’t putting a lot of first serves in in the second and third set,” Shapovalov added. “But I just kept fighting for every point and I’m extremely happy with the way I handled myself today.”
The 18-year-old will take on Borna Coric who came back from a set down to beat Jack Sock 5-7, 7-6, 6-3.
Also tomorrow, Juan Martin del Potro will look to improve his win streak to 14 against Serb Filip Krajinovic. Hyeon Chung battles Joao Sousa, Marin Cilic takes on fellow big man John Isner and Milos Raonic meets Jeremy Chardy.
TUESDAY MIAMI SCHEDULE
STADIUM start 11:00 am
ATP –  J. Isner (USA) vs  M. Cilic (CRO)
Not Before 1:00 pm
WTA –  S. Stephens (USA) vs  A. Kerber (GER)
ATP –  J. Del Potro (ARG) vs  F. Krajinovic (SRB)
ATP-Possible Court Change – D. Shapovalov (CAN) vs  B. Coric (CRO)
WTA – [WC] V. Azarenka (BLR) vs  Ka. Pliskova (CZE)
Not Before 9:00 pm
ATP –  A. Zverev (GER) vs  N. Kyrgios (AUS)
GRANDSTAND start 11:00 am
ATP – J. Sousa (POR) vs  H. Chung (KOR)
ATP –  M. Raonic (CAN) vs J. Chardy (FRA)
ATP –  F. Verdasco (ESP) vs  P. Carreno Busta (ESP)
Not Before 5:00 pm
ATP-Possible Court Change –  T. Berdych (CZE) or F. Tiafoe (USA) vs  K. Anderson (RSA)
WTA –  E. Makarova (RUS) / E. Vesnina (RUS) vs L. Kichenok (UKR) / A. Kudryavtseva (RUS)
WTA –  B. Krejcikova (CZE) / K. Siniakova (CZE) vs  H. Chan (TPE) / L. Chan (TPE)
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