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A year is a long time in the seminal stages of Jannik Sinner’s and Emil Ruusuvuori’s careers. One of the #NextGenATP Italian and the 21-year-old Finn will reach the quarter-finals of the Miami Open presented by Itau for the first time on Tuesday.

It is a far cry from the quarter-final berth the pair battled it out for at an ATP Challenger event in Canberra, Australia, in January last year. On that occasion it was the young Finn who had the better of his teenage opponent 6-3, 6-4 before the pair teamed up to play doubles in Rotterdam a month later.

Both have shot up the FedEx ATP Rankings since. Sinner, who needed nearly three hours to battle past 14th seed Karen Khachanov on Sunday, went on to claim his first two ATP Tour titles since that Canberra clash and reached a quarter-final at a Grand Slam for the first time at Roland Garros. 

Who will win this Round of 16 match in Miami?

Jannik Sinner

Emil Ruusuvuori

The 19-year-old is pressing on the cusp of the Top 30 and remains the highest seed standing in a wide open quarter of the draw. 

“It’s about trying to understand how to beat these guys, what can I improve more, trying to understand more the match,” Sinner said after defeating Khachanov. “Obviously it can give me a lot of confidence, but it’s always trying to understand what I’ve done good and what I can do better.”

Ruusuvuori, the World No. 83, has reeled off impressive three-set wins over #NextGenATP Spaniard Carlos Alcaraz, third seed Alexander Zverev and fellow Scandinavian Mikael Ymer in succession to reach his maiden ATP Masters 1000 Round of 16 in Miami this week. The first Finn through to the fourth round in Miami since Jarkko Nieminen in 2007, Ruusuvuori expected a vastly different match against Sinner this time.

“We’ve both have played a lot of tennis in between,” he said. “He’s improved a lot and has been playing great, as we all know. It’s going to be a very tough match again, he had a big win, it was a long time on the court too… We know each other pretty well and we’ve practised often, which is fun. He hits the ball so well, it’s going to be a fun match.”

As one of four American men through to the Round of 16, Frances Tiafoe will bid to match his best run in Miami from 2019, when he reached the quarter-finals (l. to Shapovalov). The 23-year-old will need to overturn a 0-3 ATP Head2Head record against top seed Daniil Medvedev to do so.

Tiafoe needed three sets in each of his first three matches to reach the Round of 16, while Medvedev overcame cramps and a dogged Alexei Popyrin in a two-and-a-half-hour-plus clash to book his place. The Russian World No. 2 will look to reach the quarter-finals in Miami for the first time.

Second seed Stefanos Tsitsipas needed three sets to move past resurgent former World No. 4 Kei Nishikori into the fourth round on Monday night. The Greek will next meet Italian 24th seed Lorenzo Sonego, aiming to maintain his perfect record of having reached the quarter-finals or better in every event since his run to the Australian Open semi-finals in February.

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While Tsitsipas is gunning for his seventh ATP Masters 1000 quarter-final appearance, Sonego – who beat Daniel Elahi Galan – will look to reach his second at this level, having reached the last eight at the 2019 Rolex Masters in Monte Carlo.

Russian fourth seed Andrey Rublev looks to extend his tour-leading 18-3 record for the season when he meets former World No. 3 Marin Cilic in the Round of 16. Rublev landed his third victory this month over Marton Fucsovics to advance, while Cilic ended the run of #NextGenATP Italian Lorenzo Musetti in straight sets.

Americans Sebastian Korda, Taylor Fritz and John Isner join Tiafoe in flying the home flag in their respective Round of 16 encounters. A maiden ATP Masters 1000 quarter-final is on the line for #NextGenATP player Korda and Fritz. 

Korda meets No. 5 seed Diego Schwartzman, while 22nd seed Fritz takes on 32nd seed Alexander Bublik. The 2018 champion, Isner, squares off against seventh seed Roberto Bautista Agut, while Pole Hubert Hurkacz looks to add a second Canadian seed to his victims when he meets 12th seed Milos Raonic.

ORDER OF PLAY – TUESDAY, MARCH 30

GRANDSTAND start 11:00 am
[18] J. Isner (USA) vs [7] R. Bautista Agut (ESP)
WTA MATCH Singles
[1] D. Medvedev (RUS) vs F. Tiafoe (USA)

Not Before 7:00 pm
WTA MATCH Singles

Not Before 8:30 pm
M. Cilic (CRO) vs [4] A. Rublev (RUS)

COURT 1 start 11:00 am
E. Ruusuvuori (FIN) vs [21] J. Sinner (ITA)
[22] T. Fritz (USA) vs [32] A. Bublik (KAZ)
[26] H. Hurkacz (POL) vs [12] M. Raonic (CAN)
[5] D. Schwartzman (ARG) vs S. Korda (USA)

Not Before 7:00 pm
[24] L. Sonego (ITA) vs [2] S. Tsitsipas (GRE)

BUTCH BUCHHOLZ start 1:00 pm
WTA MATCH Doubles
WTA MATCH Doubles
[4] I. Dodig (CRO) / F. Polasek (SVK) vs O. Marach (AUT) / L. Saville (AUS)


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