MIAMI, FL, USA -- American teenager Amanda Anisimova got her Miami Open campaign off to a winning start, needing two sets to move past former Top 10 player Andrea Petkovic and reach the second round.
The youngest of five teens in the WTA’s Top 100, 17-year-old Anisimova turned heads earlier this season with her strong Aussie Swing results, reaching a quarterfinal in Auckland and the fourth round of the Australian Open
In Indian Wells she was outshined by another teen: while Anisimova fell in the second round to Elise Mertens, Bianca Andreescu completed a Cinderella run to the trophy and become the first wildcard to win the BNP Paribas Open - and did so on debut.
Anisimova looked keen to replicate her fellow teenager’s success in Miami, closing out the 6-4, 6-3 win against Petkovic in just under an hour and a half.
Anisimova had Petkovic under pressure on serve from the start, taking balls early and returning with aggression. She created her first break chances at 2-1 before finally converting at 4-3, aided by an untimely double fault from the German. That lone break would prove to be enough for the set, and Anisimova served it out with confidence.
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The 17 year old got off to an even faster start in the second, breaking straightaway to record a 1-0 lead, but that’s when Petkovic began to raise her level. The German pushed Anisimova and three break chances on her serve, but she couldn’t manage to convert. Instead, she found herself down a double break as Anisimova broke once more at 4-1.
With Anisimova looking ready to cross the finish line, Petkovic once again found a second wind to play some of her best tennis, saving a match point at 5-1 and breaking back to make it 5-2. But as much as Petkovic tried to extend her stay in the match, Anisimova was able to slam the door shut on her comeback efforts. She closed out the match in emphatic style - breaking straight back and converting her fourth match point to claim the victory.
Into the Miami second round for the second straight year, Anisimova will take on No.21 seed Anett Kontaveit in her next match. Anisimova will be seeking her third career Top 20 victory and her second of the year when she faces Kontaveit, after defeating Aryna Sabalenka at the Australian Open earlier this year.
More to follow...