Match Preview

Preview: Medvedev & Felix Start Miami Campaigns

Hurkacz, Norrie & Shelton also in action
March 24, 2023
Daniil Medvedev is 24-3 for the 2023 season.
Peter Staples/ATP Tour
Daniil Medvedev is 24-3 for the 2023 season. By ATP Staff

Editor's Note: Stefanos Tsitsipas advanced to the third round via walkover after Richard Gasquet withdrew due to a left ankle issue.

The seeded stars in the bottom half of the Miami Open presented by Itau draw begin their campaigns on Saturday, when Stefanos Tsitsipas, Daniil Medvedev and Felix Auger-Aliassime will be in action.

The second seed Tsitsipas takes on Frenchman Richard Gasquet, while fourth seed Medvedev will look to build on his run to the final in Indian Wells against Spaniard Roberto Carballes Baena. Fifth seed Auger-Aliassime takes on Thiago Monteiro.

Hubert Hurkacz, Cameron Norrie and Ben Shelton will also take to court in Miami. runs through some of the key second-round matchups on show.

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[4] Daniil Medvedev vs. Roberto Carballes Baena (ESP)

Medvedev’s 19-match winning streak came to an end last week in Indian Wells, where Carlos Alcaraz defeated him in the championship match. The 27-year-old, who won titles in Rotterdam, Doha and Dubai last month, is nonetheless delighted with where his game is at as he looks to start a fresh run against Carballes Baena.

“I managed to get back in the zone, which I didn't really have for all of 2022, when I was less consistent,” Medvedev said when asked about his recent form. “I would have some good matches or tournaments but out of nowhere I would have one bad match. I've managed to avoid that the past four weeks. I have no idea how I have done it, but I am really happy and want to continue.”

During the title match in Indian Wells, Alcaraz used the drop shot to exploit Medvedev’s deep-court position. Carballes Baena trails Medvedev 0-1 in their ATP Head2Head series and may look to follow Alcaraz’s playbook and apply the same tactic in Miami to upset the fourth seed’s rhythm. Medvedev, who has reached consecutive quarter-finals in Miami, will hope his consistency and depth will prove too much for Carballes Baena, who is 4-7 on the season.

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[5] Felix Auger-Aliassime (CAN) vs. Thiago Monteiro (BRA)

Auger-Aliassime arrives in Miami at a career-high No. 6 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings after advancing to the quarter-finals in Indian Wells last week. The Canadian, who lost to Alcaraz in California, will be eager for more, however, as he aims to hit the heights of 2022.

The fifth seed won four tour-level titles last year, but has yet to reach a final at any of the six events he has played this season. The 22-year-old will be hoping to change that record in Miami, where he holds fond memories.

Auger-Alassime soared to the semi-finals on debut in 2019, advancing from qualifying to announce himself on Tour. Starting his tournament at the second-round stage this week, he will look to hit through Monteiro with his destructive forehand and improve to 3-0 in their ATP Head2Head series. The Brazilian Monteiro defeated Jason Kubler in the first round and is currently No. 80 in the Pepperstone ATP Live Rankings.

[2] Stefanos Tsitsipas (GRE) vs. Richard Gasquet (FRA)

After soaring to the Australian Open final in January, Tsitsipas has slowed in recent weeks. The Greek fell in the second round in Rotterdam and then was unable to compete in Acapulco due to a shoulder injury. He continued to feel the effects of the issue in Indian Wells, where he suffered an opening-round exit.

The second seed will be hoping his troubles are behind him as he aims to bounce back in Miami, starting against Gasquet.

"My health is the most important thing that I could have in tennis," said Tsitsipas, who reached the quarter-finals in Miami in 2021. “"When I'm feeling healthy, everything falls into place nicely. I'm enjoying myself on the court, I'm getting creative, I can mix up my game and I feel like nothing can go wrong. This is what my aim is for this tournament, to just play pain-free and see how my arm responds on these next few days."

Chasing his first title of the season and third ATP Masters 1000 crown, Tsitsipas will hope to make a fast start against Gasquet, with the pair locked at 1-1 in their ATP Head2Head series. The 36-year-old Frenchman defeated Christopher O’Connell in the first round to earn his 596th tour-level win. Closing in on 600, Gasquet will aim to upset Tsitsipas and edge closer to that standout milestone.

Also In Action…

Eighth seed Hurkacz captured the biggest title of his career two years ago when he defeated Jannik Sinner to triumph in Miami. The Pole, who also reached the semi-finals at the hard-court event last year, starts his title quest against Australian Thanasi Kokkinakis.

#NextGenATP American Ben Shelton is the 32nd seed in Miami. The 20-year-old has enjoyed a breakthrough season and will aim to build on his strong start against Frenchman Adrian Mannarino.

The 11th seed Cameron Norrie meets Frenchman Gregoire Barrere, while 2022 Next Gen ATP Finals runner-up Jiri Lehecka plays 18th-seeded Italian Lorenzo Musetti.

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