American Tennis Stars Suffer March Madness at Miami Open

American Tennis Stars Suffer March Madness at Miami Open

The NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournaments are in full swing, but for three American men’s tennis stars, the Miami Open brought a different kind of March Madness.

Taylor Fritz, Frances Tiafoe, and Tommy Paul all suffered disappointing exits in their opening matches, with Paul’s injury raising concerns.

Fritz, ranked 13th in the world, saw his Sunshine Double hopes dashed by Thiago Seyboth Wild in a 6-3, 6-4 defeat. Despite playing on home soil, Fritz struggled to find his rhythm against the Brazilian qualifier, who was buoyed by the support of his fans.

Paul, ranked one spot behind Fritz, suffered a recurrence of a left ankle injury that had troubled him at Indian Wells. Leading 6-4, 1-2 against Damm, Paul rolled his ankle while rushing the net and was forced to retire. The injury looked more serious than the one he sustained in his loss to Daniil Medvedev last week.

Tiafoe, who dropped out of the Top 20 before the Miami Open, continued his struggles with a 7-5, 7-6 (5) defeat to Christopher O’Connell. The Australian qualifier knocked out the American, who has now won just two of his last six matches.

The exits of Fritz, Paul, and Tiafoe leave the American contingent at the Miami Open depleted. However, there are still some bright spots, with Sebastian Korda and Reilly Opelka advancing to the third round.