Former Masters champions Daniil Medvedev, Alexander Zverev and John Isner open play at the Masters Masters on Friday when the men’s seeds hit the court.
Medvedev, a 4-time Masters champion and tournament favorite, will take on Yen-Hsun Lu in his opener. The Russian has won 24 of his last 26 matches but has never done well in Miami. He’ll make his debut today on court as a World No. 2 and a top seed for a first time at a Masters.
“Definitely being the top seed first time in a Masters event, especially one like this in Miami, being No. 2 in the world, I’m enjoying the moment,” Medvedev said earlier in the week. “I don’t feel the pressure except for the pressure that I like to win matches and I want to win every tournament I play. This I had since I was young. This pressure always stays with me. But I feel like it’s a good, competitive pressure.
“Not really feel pressure from the outside because I know what I have to do. I know if I play good, I have my chances to win the tournament. That’s the most important.”
Former finalist Alexander Zverev begins his campaign against talented youngster Emil Ruusuvuori. The German just won his 14th title beating Stefanos Tsitsipas in the Acapulco final on Saturday.
“I think Acapulco was a big step not only of course for me because I won the tournament, but in general in tennis we saw we could have a crowd back,” Zverev said. “We saw how to do it in a safely manner, as well. Testing everyone up front, you can only enter the stadium with a negative test, something like that. I think this is how sports will get their public back in the near future. Of course, not to maximum capacity, but that’s how it should be done.
“I’m looking forward to Miami. I’m looking forward to the upcoming weeks. I hope I can build on my recent form and continue to play even better.”
The man who beat Zverev in the 2018 Miami final was John Isner, and he’s also in action on a busy Friday which is the start of the second round.
Also playing today are former semifinalist Felix Auger-Aliassime, Grigor Dimitrov, Karen Khachanov and Americans Frances Tiafoe, Taylor Fritz and Reilly Opelka.
On Thursday, young sensations Sebastian Korda and Lorenzo Musetti were both early winners as was the lone Slam winner in the men’s draw, Marin Cilic, and Thanasi Kokkinakis.
Spain dropped to 0-4 after both Fernando Verdasco and Pedro Martinez lost. Their lone remaining player, Roberto Bautista Agut, is on court today.
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