VENUS, SOCK LEAD U.S. CHARGE
AT 2017 MIAMI OPEN
Ashley Marshall | March 31, 2017
The top two Americans who bolted out of the starting gate to begin the season continued their impressive start to 2017 by wrapping up the spring hard-court swing with deep runs at the Miami Open.
Three-time Miami champion Venus Williams defeated world No. 1 Angelique Kerber and seventh-seeded Svetlana Kuznetsova on her path to the semifinals, while Jack Sock reached the quarterfinals to lift him even closer to a Top 10 world ranking.
The U.S. duo has a combined 32-8 record this year, with six of those losses coming against players ranked inside the Top 16.
In beating Kerber, Venus, who turns 37 this summer, became the oldest player to defeat a current world No.1. It also moved her into a tie with Lindsay Davenport for third place in all-time wins against a No. 1 and elevated her to a provisional ranking on No. ADVERTISEMENT 10.
“In my heart I’ll always be a tennis player,” Venus said when asked about her legacy and longevity. “I think once I'm done I'll never feel completely whole without the game or playing pro. I just think that's how it'll be. For now I'm whole so I'm going to go, and then we can talk about legacy or whatever afterwards. But clearly it's something intense.”
For Sock, who fell to Rafael Nadal in the quarterfinals, his run in the Sunshine State should move him up to a career-high 15th in Monday’s updated rankings.
Elsewhere in Miami, Bethanie Mattek-Sands, Jared Donaldson and Donald Young each advanced to the fourth round before losses to Mirjana Lucic-Baroni, Sock and Fabio Fognini, respectively. John Isner, Sam Querrey, Madison Keys, Shelby Rogers and Taylor Townsend all reached the third round.
Earlier in the tournament, Frances Tiafoe came through qualies and gave an impressive accounting of himself in a 7-6, 6-3 second-round loss to Roger Federer, who praised the American teen’s explosive power afterward.
In doubles play, Sock and fellow American Nicholas Monroe will contest the men’s final against Lukasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo on Saturday after seeing off the winningest doubles team in history, Bob and Mike Bryan, in the semifinals.