Dan Evans beaten in qualifying but still reaches Miami Open main draw

Evans is in the Miami main draw (Picture: Getty Images)

Dan Evans fell to Kazakhstan’s Alexander Bublik in qualifying but was handed a reprieve as he reached the main draw of the Miami Open courtesy of a lucky loser spot.

The British No. 3 was beaten 6-4 6-4 by the world No. 131 on Wednesday but he was entered into a lucky loser draw as one of the top-three ranked players to be beaten in the final round of qualifying.

Two of them were to advance and Evans was drawn out the hat to set up a first-round tie with Malek Jaziri.

Should Evans beat the 35-year-old Tunisian, he will take on Canada’s Denis Shapovalov in round two.

His compatriot Jay Clarke was forced to pack his bags after going down 6-4 6-4 to India’s Prajnesh Gunneswaran.

Tsonga was beaten (Picture: /Getty Images)

Former world No. 4 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga also failed to reach the main draw after being handed a tough draw against Uruguay’s Pablo Cuevas.



Cuevas – a former top-20 player – defeated the Frenchman 6-4 6-4.

It was better news for Canadian prodigy Felix Auger-Aliassime, who beat Italy’s Paolo Lorenzi 7-6 (7-1) 6-2.

Novak Djokovic may also count himself fortunate to avoid a potentially testing second-round tie with Tomas Berdych, after the Czech pulled out of the tournament.

#NewsUpdate pic.twitter.com/tjm4zpVyiy

— Tomáš Berdych (@tomasberdych) March 20, 2019

He posted on Twitter: ‘Not a good day in the office, unfortunately I have to pull out from my first round match.

‘My back is not in the 100% conditions and I have to be careful with my decisions. Need time to recover and be strong again.’

Berdych was due to face Aussie bad boy Bernard Tomic in his opening match but a lucky loser will now take his place.

Elsewhere, two-time Grand Slam champion Victoria Azarenka fought hard to earn the first win on the stadium court at the new Miami Open site.

Azarenka picked up a historic win (Picture: Getty Images)

The Belarusian – a three-time Miami champion at the old Crandon Park Venue – defeated Dominika Cibulkova on the 13,800-seat stadium 6-2 3-6 6-4.

‘Even though we know each other pretty well, I feel that we haven’t played in a few years,’ Azarenka said. ‘I feel the last time was actually in Miami but five years ago or so.

‘She’s a very dangerous opponent, because no matter how many, she comes off confident or not confident against top players, she’s always bringing a little bit of a next level and good game.



‘She’s a big fighter. So I knew it’s not going to be easy, for sure.’

Azarenka will go on to face French 19th seed Caroline Garcia in round two.

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