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Elite 8 – a look at the Miami Open men’s singles quarter-finals

Hubert Hurkacz is all that stands between Daniil Medvedev and the No 1 ranking. The pair will meet in the quarter-finals in Miami.

Hubert Hurkacz Miami Open 2021 Hubert Hurkacz Miami Open 2021 © Panoramic / Tennis Majors

And then there were eight! All eight round of 16 matches were completed on Tuesday in Miami, which means that the quarter-finals are ready to roll.

Miami Open 2022: Men’s Singles Draw | Results Order of Play

Join us for a quick look at each of the four matchups:

[1] Daniil Medvedev vs [8] Hubert Hurkacz

The top seed is one win away from making his return to No 1 in the ATP rankings, but standing in his way is the defending champion Hubert Hurkacz. Medvedev famously lost to Hurkacz in a wild five-setter at Wimbledon in the round of 16, but Medvedev took his revenge at the National Bank Open in Canada and again at the ATP Finals in Turin, winning in three sets each time.

Medvedev, who rallied to defeat American Jenson Brooksby on Tuesday, is ready for the craziness.

“We had some crazy matches with Hubert, we had three last year, I don’t think we played before and all of them were pretty intense with not a lot of margin for error,” he said.

[14] Carlos Alcaraz vs Miomir Kecmanovic

It took an inspired, soulful effort from Rafael Nadal to put down the threat that his 18-year-old compatriot posed two weeks ago in the Indian Wells semis. With Nadal out and nursing a stress fracture to his rib this week, the responsibility of stopping Alcaraz now rests in less experienced hands.

Watching the Spaniard bully his way past Stefanos Tsitsipas on Tuesday evening in Miami, 7-5, 6-3, it is becoming difficult to imagine him being stopped. Alcaraz and his spine-tingling brand of power tennis just have that effect on observers. A year ago he was just cutting his teeth on the ATP Tour – he had not even made his top-100 debut yet – but now it feels like Alcaraz has officially arrived.

Is he ready to win a Masters 1000 title, at this stage of his development?

Stay tuned.

Up next the world No 16 will face Serbia’s Miomir Kecmanovic. It has been an eye-opening March for Kecmanovic as well – he improved to 17-6 on the season with his three-set victory over Taylor Fritz on Tuesday evening, and has now reached the last eight at Indian Wells and Miami.

[9] Jannik Sinner vs Francisco Cerundolo

Sinner took the circuitous route to the round of 16, saving match points in each of his first two matches in Miami (three vs Emil Ruusuvuori in the second round, five vs Pablo Carreno Busta in round three) but Jannik Sinner kept it relatively simple against Nick Kyrgios on Tuesday to reach the quarter-finals, last year’s runner-up calmly navigating the swirling chaos that the Aussie subjected him to.

Next up for the promising 20-year-old Italian? An Argentinian who is coming of age on the big stage. Francisco Cerundolo has reached the round of 16 on his Masters 1000 debut, thanks to his 6-7(2), 7-6(3), 6-2 takedown of American Frances Tiafoe on Tuesday.

The 23-year-old world No 103 packs a mean forehand, which he used to great effect against Tiafoe on Tuesday.

[6] Casper Ruud vs [2] Alexander Zverev

The third career meeting between Zverev and Ruud will give the Norwegian a chance to make some strides against a player that has dismissed him with relative ease in their first two encounters. Zverev has taken all four sets against Ruud, all of them played on hard courts, and dropped just 13 games overall against the 23-year-old.

Zverev is aware that he’ll have to do his best to not let Ruud dictate with his forehand, which has become one of the biggest shots in the sport.

“I think he’s playing great tennis,” the German said. “The way he beat Cameron Norrie on a hard court is quite impressive, and I think when he’s playing like that he can beat anybody. I think he’s somebody that really does not miss much. He’s somebody that tries to play aggressive with his forehand as well. Gotta take away his strength in a way and we’ll see how it goes tomorrow.”

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