Zverev zooms past Wawrinka to make Miami Open quarterfinals

Tuesday, Mar 28

The future of the ATP looks bright.

The no. 1 seed in Miami, Stan Wawrinka, has been eliminated by teenager and world no. 20 Alexander Zverev in the fourth round of the Miami Open. Zverev posted an impressive 4-6, 6-2, 6-1 comeback victory over Wawrinka (who was celebrating his 32nd birthday that same day).

This is the second time the young Zverev has gotten the best of the veteran Wawrinka. Zverev holds a perfect 2-0 head-to-head record against the Swiss world no. 3. In 2016, Zverev defeated Wawrinka for the St. Petersburg title – his first ATP title.

The 19-year-old German rising star has posted many impressive results over the past year. He is already a title-holder in 2017 after defeating Richard Gasquet at the Open Sud de France in Montpellier. Zverev also held a 2-set-to-1 lead over Rafael Nadal in the third round of the Australian Open earlier this year.

In 2016, Zverev started the season as the world no. 83 and finished as no. 20. The season was highlighted by wins over Roger Federer, Dominic Thiem, Grigor Dimitrov, Marin Cilic, and John Isner. Zverev finished the year as the youngest player in the Top 90. Frances Tiafoe was the only other teenager in the ATP Top 100.

Zverev will face Nick Kyrgios in the quarterfinals of the Miami Open. Kyrgios is coming off a strong performance against David Goffin, emerging victorious with a 7-6(5), 6-3. Kyrgios won the pair’s only encounter in Indian Wells earlier this month.

Zverev is among many of the ‘ATP Next Gen’ stars on tour battling in the Race to Milan. What is that?

Similar to the ATP Race to London, where the Top 8 players with points accumulated in the current season venture off to the O2 Arena and participate in the Year-End Championships, the ATP Next Gen Race to Milan is the same thing for younger players. Along with Zverev, Taylor Fritz, Frances Tiafoe, and Borna Coric are other possible contenders. The tournament will run from November 7 to 11 in Milan, Italy.

To qualify, players must be under the age of 21 and be among the Top 7 in points accumulated in the season. The eighth spot is reserved for a wildcard entry. If you were wondering – yes, Canadian rising stars Denis Shapovalov and Felix Auger-Aliassime would be eligible to compete in this tournament.

Click here to track the ATP Next Gen Race to Milan.


Photo via Miami Open.