Wolf ousts Tiafoe in Dallas Open quarters, Isner advances

Mike Frey-USA TODAY Sports
1 Comment

DALLAS — J.J. Wolf rallied for a three-set victory over No. 2 seed Frances Tiafoe, and John Isner won his 500th career tiebreaker in another straight-sets win in the quarterfinals of the Dallas Open.

Top-seeded Taylor Fritz held on to beat No. 7 seed Marcos Giron 7-6 (7), 3-6, 6-3 in a rematch from the quarterfinals of the inaugural Dallas event last year, when Giron won in three sets to set up the first all-American semifinals on the ATP Tour since 2004.

There wasn’t a chance for a replay of four U.S. semifinalists in Dallas, with China’s Yibing Wu facing eighth-seeded Adrian Mannarino of Italy in the last quarterfinal. Wu rolled to a 6-3, 6-4 victory and will face Fritz.

Wolf, the No. 6 seed, reached his second career semifinal by erasing two break points in the deciding game of another all-American match, closing out the 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 win with his 11th ace on his second match point.

Wolf was broken twice by Tiafoe, a U.S. Open semifinalist last year, while facing nine break points in the first set. The 24-year-old didn’t face another break point until the final game.

“I usually don’t think about the outcome, so I was just feeding off the energy of the fans and playing every point as hard as I could,” Wolf said.

Wolf’s opponent is the fifth-seeded Inser, who is back in the semifinals in the second year of his hometown event after a 7-6 (8), 7-5 win over Ecuador’s Emilio Gomez, the unseeded 31-year-old son of 1990 French Open champion Andres Gomez.

Isner is the first ATP Tour player to 500 wins in tiebreakers. Roger Federer is second with 466.

Isner and Gomez, playing in his first tour-level quarterfinal, won every point on their own serve in the tiebreaker until Isner took a 9-8 lead on Gomez’s serve before serving out the first set.

Inser closed out the match with the only break, and the big-serving American hasn’t had his serve broken in any of the three matches.

Fritz, the highest-ranked American at No. 8, reached the semifinals after a disappointing second-round exit at the Australian Open. The 25-year-old won three titles in 2022 and reached the semifinals at Wimbledon.

After dropping the second set, Fritz broke Giron’s serve for a 2-0 lead in the deciding set and stayed in front from there.

Wu needed just 73 minutes to eliminate the journeyman Mannarino and reach an ATP semifinal for the first time.

Wu saved all three break points he faced while converting three of four break chances against Mannarino.

The 23-year-old Wu was the first Chinese man to reach the third round at the U.S. Open when he did it as a qualifier last year. Injured for much of 2019-20, Wu is ranked in the top 100 for the first time.

Elena Rybakina hits 10 aces in Miami for 12th straight win

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — Reigning Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina extended her winning streak to 12 matches by delivering 10 aces – her fourth consecutive outing with at least that many – in a 6-3, 6-0 victory over 25th-seeded Martina Trevisan in the Miami Open quarterfinals.

Rybakina has 46 aces through four matches at the hard-court tournament in Florida and a WTA-leading 201 this season.

The 23-year-old, who represents Kazakhstan, improved to 20-4 in 2023, including a run to the Australian Open final in January and a title at Indian Wells, California, last week.

She is trying to become only the fifth player to win the women’s trophies at Indian Wells and Miami in the same season. Top-ranked Iga Swiatek did it a year ago; she withdrew from Miami this time because of a rib injury.

“Of course it would be amazing to achieve something like that,” the 10th-seeded Rybakina said about the prospect of completing what’s known as the Sunshine Double, “but it’s still far away.”

So far in Rybakina’s career, 13 of her 18 semifinal appearances have come on hard courts. She will face No. 3 Jessica Pegula for a berth in the final after the American fought off two match points and outlasted No. 27 Anastasia Potapova 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (2) in a match that ended just before 1:30 a.m. after play had been delayed by rain.

“I haven’t been that physically tired in just a really long time,” Pegula said. “Just the humidity was taking so much out of me, and I haven’t been able to play in humidity like that in a while. It was just really tough, so really, it was just pure will.”

Trevisan reached the French Open semifinals in 2022.

In fourth-round men’s action Tuesday, No. 2 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas was beaten 7-6 (4), 6-4 by No. 14 Karen Khachanov, while defending champion Carlos Alcaraz, Taylor Fritz and Jannik Sinner all beat seeded opponents in straight sets.

Alcaraz, who returned to No. 1 in the ATP rankings last week, got past Australian Open semifinalist Tommy Paul 6-4, 6-4 to set up a meeting against Fritz, the top-ranked American man and seeded ninth in Miami.

Fritz compiled twice as many winners, 22, as unforced errors, 11, and only dropped serve once during a 6-3, 6-4 victory over No. 7 Holger Rune. That put Fritz into his first quarterfinal in seven appearances in Miami – and his first matchup against Alcaraz, a 19-year-old from Spain who won the U.S. Open in September for his first Grand Slam title.

“I’m really excited for it,” Fritz said. “I think that a lot of people are really excited for that, too.”

No. 10 Sinner eliminated No. 6 Andrey Rublev 6-2, 6-4 and has yet to drop a set in the tournament.

Sinner’s next opponent will be unseeded Emil Ruusuvuori, a 4-6, 6-4, 7-5 winner against No. 26 Botic van de Zandschulp.

No. 4 Daniil Medvedev, forced to start late and off his scheduled court after the rain, beat Quentin Halys 6-4, 6-2. He will face American Christopher Eubanks, who edged Adrian Mannarino in a pair of tiebreakers.

Khachanov will play Francisco Cerundolo, a semifinalist in Miami last year, in the other men’s quarterfinal.

Fritz, Sinner reach Miami Open quarterfinals with 2-set wins

Getty Images

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — Taylor Fritz and Jannik Sinner beat seeded opponents in straight sets at the Miami Open to move into the quarterfinals.

No. 9 Fritz compiled twice as many winners, 22, as unforced errors, 11, and only dropped serve once during a 6-3, 6-4 victory over No. 7 Holger Rune.

That put Fritz, the highest-ranked American man, into his first quarterfinal in seven appearances at the hard-court tournament.

He will face either No. 1 Carlos Alcaraz or Australian Open semifinalist Tommy Paul next. Alcaraz is the defending champion in Miami.

No. 10 Sinner eliminated No. 6 Andrey Rublev 6-2, 6-4 and has yet to drop a set in the tournament.

Sinner’s next opponent will be No. 26 Botic van de Zandschulp or unseeded Emil Ruusuvuori.