SEBASTIAN Korda will have the hopes of a nation on his shoulders after being the sole United States representative through to the 2021 Miami Open ATP 1000 quarter finals from a brutal day of Round of 16 action. Korda had a fantastic win over fifth seed Diego Schwartzman, 6-3 4-6 7-5 in two hours and 35 minutes to book his spot in the final eight.
He served eight aces to one, and capitalised with 73 per cent of his first serve points to Schwartzman’s 57 per cent, and served at a higher clip (62 to 56 per cent). The American broke four times from 11 chances, whilst his opponent won three games off Korda’s serve from eight opportunities.
Korda was the sole American left standing in the final eight, following losses to three of his compatriots. Top ranked United States competitor, John Isner lost out to seventh seed Roberto Bautista Agut in three sets, going down 6-3 4-6 7-6. He joined Frances Tiafoe and Taylor Fritz on the sidelines after Round of 16 losses. Top seed Daniil Medvedev won through against Tiafoe in straight sets 6-4 6-3, while Alexander Bublik triumphed in a come-from-behind victory over 22nd seed Fritz, 6-7 6-3 6-4.
“It was definitely a tough match,” Medvedev said of reaching his maiden Miami Open quarter final. “[There were] a lot of great points, some of them he won, some of them I won… The serve helped me a lot today, especially in the second set.”
It was a great day for up-and-coming ATP Tour players, with Jannik Sinner and Hubert Hurkacz both winning their respective matches. Italian teenager Sinner won through to his maiden ATP Masters 1000 quarter final following a 6-3 6-2 win over Finland’s Emil Ruusuvuori, while Hurkacz toppled 12th seed Milos Raonic in a come-from-behind upset win 4-6 6-3 7-6.
Sinner will now take on Bublik in a tantalising semi-final, which the Kazakh 32nd seed said he was ready for despite the Italian’s obvious talent.
“[Sinner] is so young,” Bublik said. “He is an unbelievable athlete and he runs forever… He is an unbelievable player and sharing a quarter-final with him is a pleasure for me. I hope to have a great match.”
In the two matches yet to be completed, two top four seeds were out on court, with second seed Stefanos Tsitsipas taking on Italian Lorenzo Sonego, while fourth seed Andrey Rublev was engaged in a battle with unseeded Croatian Marin Cilic.
MIAMI OPEN ROUND OF 16 RESULTS:
 Daniil Medvedev (RUS) defeated Frances Tiafoe (USA) 6-4 6-3
 Stefanos Tsitsipas (GRE)  Lorenzo Sonego (ITA)
 Andrey Rublev (RUS) Marin Cilic (CRO)
Sebastian Korda (USA) defeated  Diego Schwartzman (ARG) 6-3 4-6 7-5
 Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP) defeated  John Isner (USA) 6-3 4-6 7-6
 Hubert Hurkacz (POL) defeated  Milos Raonic (CAN) 4-6 6-3 7-6
 Jannik Sinner (ITA) defeated Emil Ruusuvuori (FIN) 6-3 6-2
 Alexander Bublik (KAZ) defeated  Taylor Fritz (USA) 6-7 6-3 6-4
Picture credit: Geoff Burke / USA Today Sports