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Fernando Verdasco beats Rafael Nadal at Miami Masters on day of upsets

March 30, 2015 12:32 AM
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Fernando Verdasco has scored an upset win over fellow Spaniard Rafael Nadal in the third round of the Miami Masters.

Verdasco may be ranked 31 spots below his compatriot but there was only one point separating the two left-handers (84-83) after a typically gruelling two-hour-and-15-minute match.

And, while both players broke serve three times, 29th seed Verdasco needed just six chances as opposed to Nadal's 12 to win 6-4, 2-6, 6-3.

The world number 34 will face Juan Monaco in the fourth round after the Argentine beat Spain's Guillermo Garcia-Lopez 7-5, 6-4.

2014 Australian Open champion Stan Wawrinka was the next major winner to fall, going down in two tough sets to 28th-seeded Frenchman Adrian Mannarino.

Despite the straight-sets scoreline, the victory was far from easy for Mannarino with the match lasting two hours and 12 minutes.

Both sets went to tiebreaks, with the second containing four service breaks, as the Frenchman won 7-6 (7/4), 7-6 (7/5).

Mannarino will face Tomas Berdych in the fourth round after the Czech player defeated Australia's Bernard Tomic 6-7 (7/4 ), 7-6 (7/3), 6-1.

Mannarino is joined in the last 16 by countryman Gael Monfils, who won his all-French clash with 11th seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

The 17th seed needed just over 90 minutes to get past Tsonga after landing 64 per cent of his first serves to win 6-4, 7-6 (7/4).

Awaiting him in the next round is 21-year-old Austrian Dominic Thiem, who accounted for American Jack Sock 6-4, 6-3.

Meanwhile, third seed Andy Murray notched his 499th career victory with a 6-3, 6-4 over 27th-seeded Colombian Santiago Giraldo.

Murray will play big-serving South African Kevin Anderson after the 15th seed scored a 6-4, 6-4 win over Argentina's world number 27, Leonardo Mayer.

World number one Serena Williams comfortably beat 15-year-old CiCi Bellis 6-1, 6-1 while Romanian third seed Simona Halep and Italian Flavia Pennetta also progressed in the women's draw at the Miami Open.

Williams, a seven-time winner at Miami, lost just eight points in the 12 games she won, with Californian Bellis holding serve just once in each set.

The 19-time grand slam winner said she had to put out of mind her admiration for Bellis, who is rated as one of the most promising young Americans. Bellis had beaten 29th seed Zarina Diyas on her way to the third round.

Williams will face Svetlana Kuznetsova in the fourth round after the Russian upset 13th seed Angelique Kerber of Germany 6-3, 3-6, 6-3.

Romanian Halep, fresh from her title win at Indian Wells last week, beat Italy's Camila Giorgi 6-4, 7-5 to make the last 16 at Miami for the first time.

Halep won despite being broken when serving for the match at 5-4 up in the second.

The third seed will face Italian Pennetta who defeated two-time Miami winner Victoria Azarenka 7-6 (7/5), 7-6 (8/6). Pennetta has won all three of her matches against Halep.

Joining Pennetta in the last 16 is doubles partner Sara Errani, who beat 21st seed Garbine Muguruza 4-6, 6-4, 6-1 to set up a clash with Sabine Lisicki, who beat beat Ana Ivanovic 7-6 (7/4), 7-5.

American Sloane Stephens will meet rising Swiss teen Belinda Bencic after they beat Sweden's Johanna Larsson and German Tatjana Maria respectively.


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