Tiafoe, With LeBron's Celebrations, Into Miami QF
Frances Tiafoe reached his first Grand Slam quarter-final to start the year in Australia, and on Tuesday in South Florida, he made his maiden ATP Masters 1000 quarter-final.
The 20-year-old American snapped a three-match losing streak in Masters 1000 Round of 16 contests and earned his first win against 18th seed David Goffin in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series (1-3) 7-5, 7-6(6) in a rain-delayed contest that tested both players' patience and concentration.
The match was delayed with Goffin serving at 4-4, 0/15 in the second set, and, after a lengthy delay, the Belgian faced three break points in the opening game. But he composed himself to erase all three.
In the tie-break, though, Tiafoe was the more steady and aggressive of the two as the American injected pace whenever the opportunity arose.
Save for the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, Tiafoe's best tennis has come during the season's biggest events. The #NextGenATP American beat Kevin Anderson and Grigor Dimitrov en route to the Australian Open quarter-finals, and in Miami, the 28th seed beat #NextGenATP Serbian Miomir Kecmanovic and David Ferrer, the Spaniard's final Miami match, before facing Goffin.
Tiafoe has also brought his Instagram-worthy celebrations to Miami. In Melbourne, Tiafoe caught the eye of NBA star LeBron James by borrowing James' “The Silencer”. The 2018 Next Gen ATP Finals qualifier busted it out again on Tuesday night to an appreciative crowd.
Frances Tiafoe (@FTiafoe) March 27, 2019
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Tiafoe is projected to jump five places and match his career-high ATP Ranking of No. 29 on Monday when the new rankings are released.