Miami Open: Osaka thrashes Kerber, Raducanu out

Miami Open: Osaka thrashes Kerber, Raducanu out

Japan’s Naomi Osaka needed just sixty minutes to thrash former World No.1, Angelique Kerber, in the second round of the Miami Open while Britain’s Emma Raducanu continued her struggles with another early exit in a major tournament.

Osaka dropped just five games against the 13th seeded Kerber to win 6-2, 6-3 and will play Karolina Muchova in the third round. Osaka and Muchova have split their two previous matches with both games going to three sets.

Osaka wasted no time taking control of the match, hitting a backhand winner down the line to break Kerber in the second game. With Kerber serving down 5-2, Osaka broke her again to take the first set.

The second was more of the same as Osaka controlled the points with groundstrokes. Osaka took her third match point when another Kerber forehand sailed long to seal her second straight-set win at this tournament.

Coming in, Kerber held a 4-1 career head-to-head advantage over Osaka. She is only one of two women to defeat Osaka four times with Simona Halep the other. Kerber had won the pairs past four matches, although the two hadn’t met in more than three years.

Britain’s Emma Raducanu, meanwhile, continued her struggles since winning the US Open suffering another early exit in the Miami Open at the hands of  Katerina Siniakova in the second round.

Raducanu at one stage served for the match in the third set but ultimately fell 3-6 6-4 7-5 to the Czech.

Raducanu seeded 11th, converted just five of 17 breakpoints, and looked to be affected by nerves as she attempted to serve out the match. She started the stronger of the two and raced to a 4-1 lead before closing out the first set.

Raducanu raced to a break lead in the second before the world number 53 forced a decider. Raducanu again took a break lead early in the third set and had a chance to go 3-0 up before Siniakova reeled off three games in a row.

Despite this, Raducanu broke and served for the match at 5-4, but a double fault handed the initiative back to Siniakova. The number one ranked player in women’s doubles was then able to take advantage of a visibly disappointed Raducanu to close out the win.

The US Open champion, 19, has won just two of her seven matches this season.

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