After falling to No. 127 in the world earlier this week, his lowest ranking in
almost two years, Dudi Sela recorded an impressive 6-2, 1-6, 6-4 win over
Australian Marinko Matosevic on Wednesday night to advance to the second round
of the prestigious Sony Open in Miami.
Sela, who came through two rounds
of qualifiers to reach the main draw of the $4,330,625 event in Miami, hadn’t
reached the second round of an ATP Tour event since his first tournament of
However, Sela broke Matosevic (51) six times in the one hour and 58
minute encounter to set up an intriguing meeting with world No. 9 Janko
Tipsarevic has beaten Sela in their two previous meetings and
the Israeli will have to record one of the biggest wins of his career to
progress to a third round of an ATP Tour tournament for the first time since
Shahar Pe’er (116) was knocked out in the first round of the
women’s event in Miami on Wednesday, losing 4-6, 6-1, 6-4 to wildcard Eugenie
Pe’er can at least draw some encouragement from the fact
she won two consecutive matches in the qualifiers to reach the main draw, the
first time she has registered a winning streak on the WTA Tour since February
Meanwhile, the US Open will revert to a 14-day tournament from 2015
after United States Tennis Association (USTA) officials reached an agreement
with players on restructuring the playing schedule and increasing prize
The USTA announced in December it was adding an extra day in 2013
and 2014 to the last Grand Slam of the year to give players a day off between
the semifinals and final, extending the tournament to 15 days with the men’s
final being played on a Monday.
But after discussions with players, the
USTA announced on Wednesday that the finals would move back to their traditional
time slots from 2015, with the men’s championship on Sunday and the women’s
title match on Saturday.
“We’ve had conversations for the past several
years with the players about the advisability of playing back-to-back on
Saturday and Sundays for the semis and finals,” US Open tournament director
David Brewer told a news conference.
“It’s simply taken us some time to
get to the point where structurally we could provide that promised day of rest,
and the day of rest is now locked and loaded going forward.”
semifinals, which have generally been held the day before the final as part of
the US Open’s controversial “Super- Saturday,” would be brought forward by a day
to Friday to give the players a rest.
The five-year deal also included a
hefty increase in prize money for the US Open.
Officials had already
announced this year’s event would increase by $4.1 million to $33.6 million, but
said the total purse would be raised to $50 million by 2017.Reuters
contributed to this report.