Cameron Norrie overcame a false start to keep alive his hopes of winning a second Masters 1000 title

Posted in Tennis

March 27.- British number one Cameron Norrie overcame a false start to keep alive his hopes of winning a second Masters 1000 title as he beat Frenchman Hugo Gaston 6-3 7-5 in the Miami Open third round on Sunday, while fifth seed Paula Badosa also progressed. Norrie, who triumphed at Indian Wells last year and won at Delray Beach five weeks ago, opened the contest by dropping his serve but kept his nerve as three break points went begging in the next game before he finally converted the fourth.

Norrie fired down his seventh ace on his eighth match point to set up a meeting with world number eight Casper Ruud, who has beaten the Briton on both of their previous meetings. The in-form Ruud dispatched Alexander Bublik 6-3 6-2 in less than an hour and had the best seat in the house when his Kazakh opponent produced a highlight-reel-worthy shot in the fifth game of the second set. Bublik flipped his racquet over and tapped an overhead shot with the handle.

"You will be on Tennis TV like always," Ruud quipped to Bublik after the match. Australian Nick Kyrgios put in a clinical performance to down Italian Fabio Fognini 6-2 6-4, dropping just five first-serve points. On the women's side, Spain's Badosa put up a pristine performance to topple Kazakhstan's Yulia Putintseva 6-3 6-2. Putintseva was so frustrated with her error-filled display that she slammed her racquet with such force to the ground that it flew back up and almost hit her.

Badosa, who won last year's Indian Wells, next faces 16-year-old Czech wildcard Linda Fruhvirtova, who advanced after former world number one Victoria Azarenka abruptly retired midway through the second set of their contest. Fruhvirtova was leading 6-2 3-0 when Azarenka, who pulled out of Doha last month with an injury, informed the chair umpire that she was done and briskly walked off the court. "I don't even know how to describe it. It's what I've always dreamed of, playing in these big stadiums in front of so many people," Fruhvirtova said courtside. "It's definitely a dream come true."

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