Felix Auger-Aliassime, 18, Leads Youth Movement at the Miami Open


MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — The story of Juan Ponce de León looking for a fountain of youth in Florida could also be apocryphal, however this week at the males’s occasion of the Miami Open, there appears to be one thing revitalizing in the water.

Felix Auger-Aliassime, an 18-year-old Canadian qualifier, is the youngest man to achieve the semifinals in the match’s historical past. And his compatriot and good friend Denis Shapovalov, 19, will be a part of him in the semifinals after beating the American Frances Tiafoe 6-7(5), 6-Four, 6-2 in a quarterfinal on Thursday afternoon.

Auger-Aliassime, ranked 57th, booked his spot in the semifinals with a 7-6 (three), 6-2 win over 11th-seeded Borna Coric on Friday evening. Coric, 22, was eight years youthful than the next-oldest quarterfinalist, however nonetheless much more skilled than Auger-Aliassime, who’s in the principal draw of a Masters occasion for simply the fifth time.

“Playing Borna, who’s been established for a few years now, I definitely didn’t expect to win,” Auger-Aliassime stated, including that he was particularly shocked with how he was in a position to management the second set after a grueling opening set that lasted greater than an hour.

Ranked 182nd a year ago, Auger-Aliassime, who grew up in Montreal, broke into the top 100 after reaching the final of the ATP tournament in Rio de Janeiro in February. He is poised to be ranked 33rd on Monday and would crack the top 20 if he wins the title on Sunday.

How Auger-Aliassime’s form will translate into Grand Slam tennis played over best-of-five sets is still an open question. At last year’s U.S. Open, his only main-draw appearance at a major, he retired in the third set of his first-round match against Shapovalov because of heart palpitations.

Federer, 37, remains the oldest player in the draw. He will play his quarterfinal match against Kevin Anderson, 32, on Thursday night.

Federer turned 19 the day Auger-Aliassime was born. Federer said he enjoyed seeing members of the young generation square off against one another, particularly savoring the fourth-round match between Shapovalov and Tsitsipas, which was decided in a third-set tiebreaker.

“I loved seeing them slug it out, and I’m sure they are going to have big matches down the road,” Federer said. “I like when they also have to play each other a little bit, because they don’t look across the net and see a guy ranked whatever it is. It’s just another guy they know from the juniors, and ‘I’m just going to beat you up now.’”

BARTY WINS In a women’s semifinal that was delayed by five hours because of intermittent rain on Thursday afternoon, 12th-seeded Ashleigh Barty reached the biggest final of her career, beating 21st-seeded Anett Kontaveit 6-3, 6-3.

Barty, 22, will make her debut in the WTA Top 10 on Monday.



Source link Nytimes.com

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