ATP Miami quarterfinal preview: Alexander Zverev vs Nick Kyrgios
Alexander Zverev and Nick Kyrgios after the two met in Indian Wells. Kyrgios won 6-3, 6-4

ATP Miami quarterfinal preview: Alexander Zverev vs Nick Kyrgios

Two of the most exciting young stars on the ATP tour face off for the second tournament in a row, with a Masters 1000 semifinal at stake

oliver-dickson-jefford
Oliver Dickson Jefford

One of the most interesting clashes of the day at the Miami Open sees 16th seed Alexander Zverev take on 12th seed Nick Kyrgios for a place in the semifinals.

The only previous meeting between the two came just two weeks ago, with Kyrgios easing past Zverev in straight sets, and the Australian will be hoping for a similar performance against the talented German, who was not at his best, this time around.

This match is set to take place at 19:00 local time, and the winner will face fourth seed Roger Federer or 10th seed Tomas Berdych in the last four.

So far in Miami

Both Zverev and Kyrgios, who each received a bye in the opening round, have impressed in Miami, though neither has had a particularly easy road to the last eight.

Alexander Zverev in action against Stan Wawrinka on Tuesday (Getty/Julian Finney)
Alexander Zverev in action against Stan Wawrinka on Tuesday (Getty/Julian Finney)

Zverev started with an extremely comfortable win, easing past Lu Yen-Hsun for the loss of three games, before saving three match points to edge past 18th seed John Isner in a thrilling contest. The German played well in both those matches and continued that form as he came from a set down to see off top seed Stan Wawrinka to make the last eight.

After unfortunately having to pull out of Indian Wells midway through the tournament due to illness, Kyrgios recovered well enough to see off Damir Dzumhur in the second round with relative ease, before battling past Ivo Karlovic in an extremely tight three set encounter. He then put in another solid performance to see off eighth seed David Goffin in straight sets to reach this stage.

Analysis

Both Zverev and Kyrgios are strong servers, and have been serving well in Miami so far, though the Australian is the better server of the two, and will be looking to utilize this as much as possible to get many cheap points and dictate play early on in the points.

Also, Kyrgios probably has the more complete game of the two, generally being pretty consistent these days, and he certainly has the power to control Zverev. However, the German will not be easy to dictate, whilst the Australian, as usual, must keep his temperament in control; furthermore, he mustn’t get too downhearted if he begins to make a few mistakes.

Nick Kyrgios, in action in Miami, will look to serve well in this encounter (Getty/Matthew Stockman)
Nick Kyrgios, in action in Miami, will look to serve well in this encounter (Getty/Matthew Stockman)

It is also important for Zverev to use his power to try and dictate, as his movement is perhaps not as strong as the Australian’s, though he certainly has the capability to boss anyone around the court. The German could perhaps look to come into the net, and frustrate Kyrgios, though Zverev can be a bit emotional himself and must try to keep himself in check.

Assessment

With both men in great form so far in Miami, we should get a great match, and we could also see an insight into a budding rivalry which will likely have many contests over the next decade or so. Zverev has had a solid start to the year and certainly has the weapons to take the victory this year, though Kyrgios has been extremely consistent this year, and it seems he should have enough, just like he did in Indian Wells, to take the victory.

Prediction: Nick Kyrgios in three sets

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