World number three Stefanos Tsitsipas finally got his Miami Open campaign under way on Monday with a 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 win over Cristian Garin while Argentine Francisco Cerendulo upset fifth-seeded Felix Auger-Aliassime.
There were no shortage of upsets at Hard Rock Stadium with 12th seeded American Francis Tiafoe beaten by 59th ranked Italian Lorenzo Sonego in straight sets.
France’s Adrian Mannarino beat seventh-seeded Pole Hubert Hurkacz and American qualifier Christopher Eubanks defeated Gregoire Barrere in straight sets.
Tsitsipas arrived in Miami a week ago, had a first round bye and then had a walkover win in the second round when Richard Gasquet pulled out with injury.
“It has almost felt like a vacation this past week, staying in Miami. I glad I got started. It was a difficult match against an opponent who has played good tennis against good opponents in the past,” said the Greek.
Tsitsipas has not be on court much in recent weeks. He withdrew from Acapulco due to a shoulder injury and was beaten in his opening match at Indian Wells this month.
The rest has, however, helped Tsitsipas to recover a little from his injury and although he was not at his sharpest, he did enough to book his place in the fourth round against Karen Khachanov.
Tsitsipas broke at 4-4 in the third set to make sure of his progress against the Chilean, who enjoyed plenty of support from the South Florida crowd.
Khachanov defeated Czech Jiri Lehecka 6-2, 6-4 to reach the Miami last 16 for the first time.
Cerundolo was knocked out of Indian Wells in straight sets by Canadian Auger-Aliassime two weeks ago, but it was a very different game on the faster courts in South Florida.
The 25th-seeded Argentine was on top from the outset, taking the first set 6-2 and he kept his nerve to triumph 7-5 in the second.
Miami is a happy hunting ground for Cerundolo, who made a surprise run to the semi-finals last year, and he relished the vocal support from his fans in the crowd.
“That was another important win for me, I think I played really good from beginning to end,” he said.
“It is super nice to play here, a lot of Argentinians, a lot of people, so I really enjoyed it. Last year was amazing, so I’m really excited to be in the round of 16 again and to try to keep winning,” he added.