LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Defending champion John Isner reached the Miami Open quarter-finals with a 7-6(5) 7-6(3) win over Britain’s Kyle Edmund on Tuesday while Nick Kyrgios was given a point penalty for an audible obscenity during his loss to Borna Coric.
The obscenity by Australian Kyrgios, who produced perhaps the shot of the tournament early in his 4-6 6-3 6-2 loss to 11th-seeded Coric, was apparently directed at a spectator and the penalty put him down a double break in the third.
It was the latest incident in Miami for Kyrgios, who had already made headlines for controversial underhanded serves, a verbal spat with a spectator who was heckling him and firing off an expletive-laden rant at an umpire during a doubles match.
Kyrgios trailed 3-1 in the opening set to Coric but looked energised when, after sending a no-look volley over the net, he charged toward the back corner of the court where he executed an audacious ‘tweener’ that caught a flat-footed Coric off guard.
While the 27th-seeded Australian picked up his game it proved only temporary as Coric coolly regained control before securing victory to draw level in four career head-to-head meetings with Kyrgios.
Up next for Coric will be a clash with Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime, who beat Georgian 17th seed Nikoloz Basilashvili 7-6(4) 6-4 to become the first qualifier to reach the last eight in Miami since Guillermo Canas in 2007.
The big-serving Isner fired down 17 unstoppable aces and won 81 percent of his first-serve points to reach the quarter-finals without dropping a set through three matches in Miami.