“Enfant Terrible” Kyrgios Advances To Fourth Round At Miami Open

MIAMI, March 25, 2019 (by Sharada Rajagopalan)

Nick Kyrgios and Felix Auger-Aliassime dominated headlines in what was otherwise a routine Sunday of action for the men at the Miami Open presented by Itaú. Both Kyrgios and Auger-Aliassime won their respective third-round matches, but each went about it differently to keep themselves in the sights of tennisdom at large.

The 23-year-old Australian’s 6-3, 6-1 win over Dusan Lajovic could be considered straightforward. But only if one discounted the two underarm serves – one of which was an ace – and the argument he had with a spectator in the stands that resulted in the spectator being ushered out of the match. However, on both occasions, Kyrgios was right. While underarm serves are not illegal – although they toe the grey lines of sportsmanship – Kyrgios’ complaints against the spectator were not unjustified since he had insulted him for no reason at all.

Never one to take a taunt lying down, Kyrgios riposted, “Why are you watching me on a Sunday night? You got a free ticket? You got nothing else to do on a Sunday night? … Sunday night and you’re still out here watching me? What are you doing?” After the match, Kyrgios went on to clarify his remarks and according to a tweet posted by Tennis Now, said, “At the change of ends he literally just said ‘You’re a dick.’ And I was like I don’t quite understand the context of it. You’re sitting here you paid good money to watch me on a Sunday night …”

Barring the man in question, it was a Sunday night that turned out fine.

This brings us back to the 18-year-old Auger-Aliassime. The Canadian took down Hubert Hurkacz 7-6, 6-4 to set up a fourth round clash against Nikoloz Basilashvili. In the process, he also became the first player born in the 2000s – literally, the 21st century – to break into the top-50 of the ATP rankings.

For someone who had to play his way through the qualifiers, this has been some fine display from the teenager. It put the other wins of the day, including that of Novak Djokovic’s 7-5, 4-6, 6-1 victory over Federico Delbonis, into the shade.

RESULTS – MARCH 24, 2019
Singles – Third Round

[1] N. Djokovic (SRB) d F. Delbonis (ARG) 75 46 61
[7] J. Isner (USA) d A. Ramos-Vinolas (ESP) 75 76(6)
[19] K. Edmund (GBR) d [12] M. Raonic (CAN) 64 64
[22] R. Bautista Agut (ESP) d [15] F. Fognini (ITA) 64 64
[17] N. Basilashvili (GEO) d R. Haase (NED) 76(3) 63
[Q] F. Auger-Aliassime (CAN) d H. Hurkacz (POL) 76(5) 64

Doubles – Second Round
W. Koolhof (NED) / S. Tsitsipas (GRE) d [2] J. Murray (GBR) / B. Soares (BRA) 63 46 10-7
M. Gonzalez (ARG) / H. Zeballos (ARG) d [4] J. Cabal (COL) / R. Farah (COL) 64 36 10-7
R. Bopanna (IND) / D. Shapovalov (CAN) d [7] M. Granollers (ESP) / N. Mektic (CRO) 61 62
J. Isner (USA) / S. Querrey (USA) d R. Ram (USA) / J. Salisbury (GBR) 57 76(2) 10-7
First Round
M. Middelkoop (NED) / D. Schwartzman (ARG) d [6] R. Klaasen (RSA) / M. Venus (NZL) 64 63
I. Dodig (CRO) / E. Roger-Vasselin (FRA) d F. Lopez (ESP) / M. Lopez (ESP) 76(5) 60