Scouting Report: 10 Things To Watch In Miami
The ATP World Tour continues its journey across the United States this week, departing the desert of Indian Wells and touching down in tropical Miami for the second Masters 1000 tournament of the year.
After Juan Martin Del Potro’s thrilling BNP Paribas Open title in Indian Wells, focus shifts immediately to the season’s second ATP World Tour Masters 1000 event where Roger Federer attempts to defend his Miami Open presented by Itau crown. Federer, the No. 1 in the ATP Rankings, heads the field where he is defending 1,000 ATP Rankings points from last season.
1) Final Edition at Crandon Park: This is the 32nd and final Miami Open at the Tennis Center of Crandon Park before the tournament relocates to the Hard Rock Stadium next year. Overall this is the 34th edition of the Miami Open.
2) Outstanding Field: There are 17 of the Top 20 players in the ATP Rankings competing in Miami, led by World No. 1 and reigning champion Roger Federer, who is a three-time overall winner. The other former champ in the field is six-time winner Novak Djokovic.
3) Fantastic Federer: Federer comes into Miami as World No. 1 for the first time since 2010 (and seventh time overall) in his 17th tournament appearance. Federer, who is 50-13 in Miami, is coming off a runner-up showing in Indian Wells where he suffered his first loss after a career-best 17-match winning streak to begin the season. Federer, who has been No. 1 a record 308 weeks (as of 26 March), will retain the top ranking if he reaches the quarter-finals.
4) Delpo Streak: Juan Martin del Potro comes into Miami with an 11-match winning streak after claiming his first ATP World Tour Masters 1000 title in Indian Wells, where he saved three match points against Federer. Del Potro is off to a career-best 17-3 start and is ranked No. 6, his highest since 24 February 2014 (No. 5). He has a 15-9 record in Miami with his best result the semi-finals in 2009.
5) Indian Wells, Miami Sweep: Since 1991, seven players have won the first two ATP World Tour Masters 1000 events of the season (12 times) in Indian Wells and Miami. Djokovic has accomplished the feat four times (2011, 2014-16) Federer three times (2005-06, 2017) and once each by Andre Agassi (2001), Marcelo Rios (1998), Pete Sampras (1994), Michael Chang (1992) and Jim Courier (1991).
6) Djokovic Returns: Djokovic, who is co-Miami titles leader (six) with Agassi, returns after missing last year with an elbow injury. Djokovic won his first of a co-record (w/Nadal) 30 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 titles in Miami in 2007. This is the Serb’s third event in 2018: Australian Open (4R), Indian Wells (bye, 2R).
8) #NextGenATP Stars: There are six #NextGenATP stars in the Top 100 in the draw, led by No. 5 Alexander Zverev, No.34 Andrey Rublev, No. 46 Denis Shapovalov, No. 63 Frances Tiafoe, No. 70 Stefanos Tsitsipas and No. 71 Taylor Fritz.
10) Strong Doubles Field: The Top 4 squads in the ATP Doubles Team Rankings are in the draw, led by Oliver Marach and Mate Pavic, winners of three titles and a 22-3 record on the season. No. 2 and four-time champions Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan, make their 20th consecutive appearance. Third seeds are Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah with Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares seeded fourth.