Millennium Post

Verdasco stuns Nadal in Miami

Verdasco stuns Nadal in Miami
Verdasco caused problems from the outset and broke in the eighth game, helped by a double fault from Nadal. Nadal battled back in the second set, breaking Verdasco twice and pushing the contest into a third set. The contest turned decisively in Verdasco’s direction when he broke to go 3-1 up in the third set.

Nadal has never won in Miami, with his 11 attempts his longest streak of attempts at a tournament without a victory and he said he was concerned that he was nervous when playing. “I am playing with too much nerves for a lot of moments, in important moments, playing a little bit of anxious in those moments. I have been able to control my emotions during, let’s say, 90-95 percent of the matches in my career, on Monday it was tougher to be under self control.  But I am going to fix it. I don’t know if in one week, in six months, or in one year, but I am going to do it,” he said.

In another upset, seventh seed Stan Wawrinka lost 7-6(4), 7-6(5) to 28th-seed Adrian Mannarino. Britain’s Andy Murray moved into the last 16 after beating Colombia’s Santiago Giraldo 6-3 6-4 to clinch his 499th win on the ATP Tour. Murray would become just the ninth active player and only the 46th man in the Open era to achieve the 500-win milestone should he defeat South African Kevin Anderson in the next round at Key Biscayne.

Murray’s latest win, in bright sunshine, was a relatively straightforward matter although Giraldo’s free swinging approach in the second set brought the contest alive as he battled back from 5-1 down before Murray wrapped up the win in 84 minutes. Czech Tomas Berdych saved four match points as he beat Australia’s Bernard Tomic 6-7(4), 7-6(3), 6-1.

Serena thrashes US teen

Meanwhile, Serena Williams crushed a teenaged talent less than half her age to reach the fourth round, defeating American Catherine Bellis 6-1, 6-1. The 15-year-old US challenger was no match for the 33-year-old American, a 19-time grand slam champion who is bidding for a record eighth trophy at her home event.

Bellis, the junior world number one, found herself in a major test against the game’s current dominator in her first WTA appearance since the US Open, where she upset Dominika Cibulkova.
World number one Williams is competing in Miami for the 15th time since debuting as a teenager herself in 1998, a year before Bellis was born. Top-seed Williams will next face Russian Svetlana Kuznetsova, a winner over German 13th seed Angelique Kerber 6-3, 3-6, 6-3. Williams, bidding for a third consecutive Miami title, stretched her win streak to 14 matches at Crandon Park. Her career Miami record now stands at 69-7.

Williams wrapped up the affair in 41 minutes with 15 winners and five breaks of the prodigy’s serve. Bellis committed 21 unforced errors. “If you break down her age and her ability and how well I think she handled the moment and how well she played, I think it was good. She’s young and her being an American, you want to see people like her do well. When you’re up against them, you have to kind of put that aside, even though I’m always cheering for her. Otherwise I have to put it aside and play the match,” Williams said.


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