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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Saturday March 27, 2021

 
Sebastian Korda

Sebastian Korda toppled Fabio Fognini for his first Top 20 win on Saturday night in Miami.

Photo Source: Getty

The signs have been there for a long time for American Sebastian Korda. The impressive lineage, the No.1 junior ranking, a trip to the second week on his Roland-Garros debut, a maiden final this January at Delray Beach, backed by a challenger title. But it’s not supposed to look as easy as Korda made it look on Saturday night at the Miami Open, when he rebounded from a lopsided opening first set to put the hurt on No.10-seeded Fabio Fognini, 1-6, 6-4, 6-2.

Tennis Express


No, this was supposed to be the story of an experienced veteran and a brilliant, unorthodox talent (we like to call him the Fabulous Fognini), schooling a young, promising talent, and handing him a valuable lesson that he would one day benefit from.

But Korda, in just his 18th tour-level match, skipped the schooling step and went straight to teaching Fognini a lesson about tenacity and problem-solving.


Instead of hanging his head after being befuddled in the opening set, Korda dug deep and unearthed another layer of shotmaking prowess and punched past Fognini with relative ease. Even when things got tricky, with the 20-year-old serving at 3-2, 0-40 in the third set, it was Korda who maintained his cool and fought through the pressure points to maintain his advantage. He saved four break points in the game and never looked back, closing out his victory in one hour and 46 minutes to set up a third-round clash with Russia’s Aslan Karatsev.

Korda, who is fresh off his first Masters 1000 win, which came on Thursday when he waltzed past Radu Albot (another victory made to look far too easy, we’re sending a trend), is now looking like a player that can make a deep run in Miami. Can he match up with the hard-hitting Karatsev, a player that has been a true revelation on tour in 2021? We can’t wait to find out.

 

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