James Blake, Iga Swiatek and Lindsey Davenport stand on the court and smile.

Photo : @MiamiOpen

The first week of a Masters/WTA 1000 event can sometimes be quiet, but that was absolutely not the case in Miami in 2022.

A stunning announcement midweek completely changed the outlook of the event, which combined with a dramatic run of upsets left one woman poised to take control of the WTA Tour.

As the Miami Open continues this week, the question not who is the new top women’s player, but whether she can cap off her historic event with another trophy.

Here’s what you need to know.

In Case You Missed It: Świątek emerges from the chaos

The biggest story of the week did not even take place on the court as women’s world number one Ashleigh Barty announced her retirement right at the beginning of the Miami Open.

Her retirement meant that the No. 1 ranking was up for grabs with a number of different women in contention to claim it by the end of Miami.

However, the battle for No. 1 ended up being quite anti-climactic, as the draw collapsed in dramatic fashion with four of the top six seeded women losing their opening matches. More than half of the seeded women, 17 of 32, lost their first matches. Only nine of the seeds reached the last 16.

One woman who avoided the mass seed exodus was Doha and Indian Wells champion Iga Świątek, who had the number one ranking in her sights by the time she stepped on court for her opening match. With a win, she would ascend to the top spot after the tournament.

Needing just a single victory to move up to No. 1, the 20-year-old Pole made a statement, dropping just two games in her opening match against Viktorija Golubic as she guaranteed that she will become the first Polish tennis player to be ranked number one in the world this time next week.

Świątek remains on track for the Sunshine Double, as she is through to the last 16 with the loss of just five games and is the highest seed left in the draw. Fellow Top 10 seeds Paula Badosa, Ons Jabeur and Danielle Collins are all still alive, although Jabeur and Collins will meet in the fourth round.

That deluge of seeds defeated included Canada’s Leylah Fernandez, who lost her opening match in straight sets to Karoline Muchova.

Overall, the singles events could not have gone much worse for the Canadians as all four lost their opening matches. Along with Fernandez, Denis Shapovalov, Félix Auger-Aliassime and Rebecca Marino all failed to pick up a win in Miami. Only Marino even managed to win a set.

However, the doubles went a bit better.

Gabriela Dabrowski cruised through her opening match, but was beaten in straight sets in her second round match.

Despite his singles defeat, Shapovalov is having a great run in doubles, advancing to the quarter-finals with Rohan Bopanna. They have yet to drop a set and upset the top seeds Mate Pavic and Nikola Metkic in the second round.  

The men’s singles was significantly less wild than the women’s with most of the favourites still in the draw. The biggest player to lose was No. 5 Andrey Rublev, who was upset by the in-form Nick Kyrgios. He and Auger-Aliassime were the only Top 10 players to lose in the first week (Matteo Berrettini also withdrew).

What to Watch: Sunshine Double still on the table

Miami continues this week with the soon-to-be world number one Świątek looking to not just complete the Sunshine Double, but become the first woman to win the first three WTA 1000 (or equivalent) titles of the year.

Taylor Fritz also still has a chance to complete the Sunshine Double on the men’s side as he is still alive, although he has only played one match so far in Miami.

The men’s tour could also see a change at No. 1 depending on the Miami results.

Daniil Medvedev would retake the top spot he dropped last week should he reach the semi-finals. To get the top spot back, he needs three more wins, which could include a quarter-final match with the reigning Miami champion Hubert Hurkacz.

The Canadian focus in Miami this week is on the doubles with Shapovalov still competing.

Under the Radar:

Alexis Galarneau returned to ATP Challenger Tour action last week after making his Davis Cup debut earlier in March, reaching the quarter-finals in Lille, losing to top seed Ricardas Berankis.

On the ITF Tour, Canada’s Kelsey Stevenson reached the doubles final of the M15 event in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, losing 10-8 in a match tiebreak.

Galarneau will be back in Challenger action this week in St. Brieuc, France, while Steven Diez is competing in Pereira, Columbia.

You can follow the Canadians in action every week here.