Madison Keys got past a tricky opponent in Viktorija Golubic in the second round of the Miami Open, triumphing in straight sets after just a little over an hour as she progressed to the third round where she would face Lara Arruabarrena there.
Keys strolls to the first set victory
The match started with an easy hold of service by Keys, the higher-ranked player who recently just returned from injury having skipped the whole Australian swing. She almost made the first breakthrough in the match when she owned a break point opportunity in her first return game, but Golubic held her nerves to prevent Keys from taking the early lead and narrowly held her serve to get onto the scoreboard. Yet another comfortable service hold for Keys followed before the American finally made the first breakthrough as she broke serve in the fourth game with some really strong returns and solid groundstrokes to take the early lead.
Her excellent run continued when she consolidated the break to open up a 4-1 lead, being just two games away from winning the first set all of a sudden. Despite going up 30-0 in the sixth game of the set and looking to win her first game in four games, Golubic failed to play some consistent tennis as Keys’ offensive game continued to be merciless towards her opponent, allowing the American to break serve for the second consecutive game as she found herself just one game away from winning the first set. Keys then successfully completed half of the job when she easily held her serve to love and clinched the first set with a dominating 6-1 scoreline after just 28 minutes of play.
Keys edge through at the crucial moments
The momentum in Keys seemed to be carried over to the second set as she continued to fire her machine gun-like groundstrokes towards Golubic, breaking serve to love in the opening game of the set as she took a lead of a set and a break. What happened next was certainly unexpected as Keys suffered a slight hiccup to gift the break back to Golubic and allowed the Swiss to return level on serve. There was a third consecutive break of serve in the second set as an unforced error from Golubic gave the advantage back to the American, regaining the lead. Keys was in danger of gifting the break straight back to her opponent when she faced a break point in the following game, but a short backhand winner allowed her to fend off the challenge and eventually hold her serve narrowly to consolidate the break of serve and extend her lead to two games.
There was a fifth straight game in the second set that featured a break point opportunity as this time it was Keys who missed out on two break point chances in the next game to allow Golubic to hold her serve in a nervy game and prevent herself from lagging further behind on the scoreboard. There was finally a comfortable service hold as Keys regained a two-game advantage to edge closer to the victory. This easy hold of service allowed the American to gain the momentum and thus she broke serve in the next game to have a double break advantage in the second set, being just one game away from winning the match. Seemed to be affected by her nerves and the pressure, Keys faced two break points while serving for the match but she managed to maintain her composure at the right time to eventually close out the match in straight sets and fend off the tough challenge of the Swiss after just 69 minutes of play.