A cool, confident Taylor Fritz booked his ticket to a fifth straight quarter final at the Miami Open on Tuesday, easing past Denmark’s Holger Rune 6-3 6-4, as Italian 10th seed Jannik Sinner breezed by sixth-seeded Andrey Rublev in straight sets.
The American ninth seed pumped his racquet in a subdued celebration after an unreturnable serve wrapped up victory over the seventh-seeded Rune, who failed to convert five of his six break-point chances.
Fritz is on the hunt for a second Masters 1000 title after winning Indian Wells last year and pounced on a break point chance in the penultimate game of the opening set in front of a home crowd squarely on his side at Hard Rock Stadium.
He made good use of that momentum and broke Rune in the opening game of the second set, where he upped his level, producing only three unforced errors and winning 12 of his 15 first-serve points.
Rune, who was knocked out early at Indian Wells earlier this month, was unable to set up a single break point chance in the second set and produced nine unforced errors.
“It helps when I can grab early breaks in the sets and just play solid tennis,” said Fritz. “Serve well and hold onto the breaks - that always makes the match a lot easier.”
At the Grandstand, Sinner had no issues against Rublev after reaching the Indian Wells semi-final round last month, firing off more than two dozen winners with very few mistakes to win 6-2 6-4.
He next faces 26th seed Botic van de Zandschulp of the Netherlands or Finland’s Emil Ruusuvuori.
“I’m very happy about my performance today - I served well, I returned well ...,” Sinner said in a televised interview after the match.
“When you play a player like him you know already before the match what kind of gameplan you have and you have obviously to execute it in the best possible way.”