Australia’s hopes at the Miami Open have taken a double hit with Alex de Minaur and Jordan Thompson both bowing out of the ATP Masters 1000 event in the second round.
De Minaur, who received a first-round bye as the 15th seed, won the first set against Colombian Daniel Elahi Galan but succumbed 4-6 6-3 6-4 in a tussle that went past two-and-a-half hours.
On a frustrating day for de Minaur, he could only convert three of 13 break-point opportunities while his opponent was more clinical when it counted.
Galan broke in the ninth game of the final set and served it out to love to reach the round of 32.
Thompson’s outing against Milos Raonic was more lopsided with the Croatian 12th seed needing just one hour to record a 6-2 6-1 win.
Raonic served 14 aces and won 22 of his 23 first-serve points in a dominant performance.
Thanasi Kokkinakis will face Hungarian Marton Fucsovics later on Saturday as he attempts to join fellow Australians Alexei Popyrin and James Duckworth in the third round.
For the like of Stefanos Tsitsipas, the draw in Miami began to look a lot less daunting even before the tournament began.
While Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer withdrew because of injuries, top-ranked Novak Djokovic decided against making the trip from his native Serbia.
They stayed home with their 58 grand slam trophies.
“It’s a first test to see how it is playing without them,” Tsitsipas said after his second-round victory.
“There is going to be a time in the future where this is going to be more frequent and happening more regularly, and maybe even a standard soon.
“So, yeah, we get a taste of how it is playing without them.”
Tsitsipas, the second seed, swept aside Damir Dzumhur 6-1 6-4.
“I created a lot of opportunities with my serve. I wasn’t rushing at all, finding the right angles and executing it perfectly,” the Greek world No.5 said.
Tsitsipas will next face Kei Nishikori while among the others to reach the third round is Russian Aslan Karatsev, who has shot up 85 places to world No.27 since the start of the year.