Medvedev reaches last 16 in Miami, Osaka into quarters

March 28 (Reuters) — Top seed Daniil Medvedev moved a step closer to reclaiming the world number one ranking as he beat Spaniard Pedro Martinez 6-3 6-4 on Monday to reach the last 16 at the Miami Open while Naomi Osaka cruised into the quarter-finals of the women’s draw.

Medvedev, who can replace Novak Djokovic on top of the world rankings if he reaches the Miami semi-finals, fired down 14 aces, won 79% of his first-serve points and broke Martinez three times to secure victory in 84 minutes.

«I just felt like I had to be more consistent, and the more consistent one today would win,» Medvedev said.

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«I managed to just make a few less errors at important moments, serve even better, and it was a small margin but I managed to win and I’m really happy.»

Up next for the Russian, who lost his world number one ranking after a surprise third-round loss at Indian Wells two weeks ago, will be American Jenson Brooksby, a 6-3 5-7 6-4 winner over Spanish 15th seed Roberto Bautista Agut.

Spanish 14th seed Carlos Alcaraz faces seasoned Croatian Marin Cilic while Greek third seed Stefanos Tsitsipas kicks off the evening session against Australian Alex De Minaur.

Japan’s Osaka reached the quarter-finals for a second consecutive year with a 6-3 6-4 win over American Alison Riske during which she won 70% of her first-serve points and recovered after falling behind 2-0 in the second set.

After the match the unseeded Osaka expressed how she is in a different state of mind than last year when arriving at the Miami Open ranked second after winning the Australian Open.

«It’s really funny for me because last year I made it to the (Miami) quarters too but it was after I won Australia and I wasn’t that grateful, I kind of expected to win,» said Osaka.

«But I’m in the same position this year and I am so like, this is really like one of the funnest times of my life.»

Standing between four-times Grand Slam champion Osaka and a first Miami semi-final spot will be ninth-seeded Australian Open finalist Danielle Collins, who beat Tunisian eighth seed Ons Jabeur 6-2 6-4.

Poland’s new world number one Iga Swiatek faces 14th seed Coco Gauff, while Spanish fifth seed Paula Badosa closes out the evening session against Czech wildcard Linda Fruhvirtova.

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Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto; Editing by Ken Ferris

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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