Photo : @DaniilMedwed
There was no Sunshine Double to be had in 2023 but the two Indian Wells champions made it a near thing. In the end, it was a pair of veterans getting their hands on the trophy at the Miami Open.
And now, perhaps much to the men’s champion’s chagrin, the ground under the players’ feet is about to get a lot less solid.
Here’s what you need to know.
In Case You Missed It: Medvedev caps off hard courts in style, Kvitova denies Rybakina
For a moment, it looked like Carlos Alcaraz and Elena Rybakina would become the first pair to complete the Sunshine Double in the same year since 2016, but ultimately neither accomplished the feat.
Rybakina came close, reaching the final of the Miami Open where she lost to a resurgent Petra Kvitova in straight sets.
Alcaraz’s bid came to an end in the semifinals at the hands of Jannik Sinner, who went on to lose in the final to Daniil Medvedev. As a result of not defending his title, the Spaniard surrendered the No. 1 ranking back to Novak Djokovic.
Leylah Annie Fernandez was the surprise star for the Canadians, reaching her first WTA 1000 doubles final alongside Taylor Townsend. They knocked off the seventh and third-seeded pairs on their way to the final, where they lost to second seeds Coco Gauff and Jessica Pegula.
In singles, only Félix Auger-Aliassime and Bianca Andreescu had made it to the second week in Miami and both lasted just a day, albeit exiting the event in very different fashions on Monday.
Francisco Cerundolo finally got the better of Auger-Aliassime in their third meeting of 2023, denying the Canadian a seventh straight Masters 1000 quarter-final with a straight-set upset. Andreescu’s tournament came to an end after rolling her ankle in her round of 16 match, which resulted in two torn ligaments in her ankle. She has not given a specific timetable for her return to the court.
What to Watch: Time for Clay!
And just like that, cement gives way to the dirt.
Katherine Sebov already has started to carry her hot start onto the clay as she qualified for the WTA 500 event in Charleston this week. It is the first time in Sebov’s career that she is playing consecutive WTA Tour events.
She and Leylah Annie Fernandez are both competing in Charleston. Sebov kicked off her main draw with a win over Lauren Davis and will play fourth-seed Belinda Bencic in the second round. Fernandez meets Evgeniya Rodina in her first-round match ahead of a potential clash with Paula Badosa in round two. Fifth seed Veronika Kudermetova looms in round three.
Jessica Pegula and Ons Jabeur are the top two seeds.
Fernandez and Taylor Townsend will also be looking to keep their hot run going as the Miami runners-up are competing in doubles.
Eugenie Bouchard makes her return to the WTA Tour this week, playing at her first event since Australian Open qualifying in Bogota, Colombia. She beat Ylena In-Albon in the first round and will play Francesca Jones in the second round.
Carol Zhao is also competing in Bogota and plays Maria Carle in the first round, with a potential clash with Nuria Parrizas Diaz in round two.
Read also: Is parity on the WTA Tour a good thing?
Week one of the clay swing on the ATP Tour is one of the most interesting on the calendar, as not only does it feature three events on three different continents, but it includes the only event of the year in Africa in Marrakech, Morocco.
All three events are on clay and are at the ATP 250 level. Lorenzo Musetti is the top seed in Marrakech, while the American contingent led by Frances Tiafoe headline the U.S. Men’s Clay Court Championship in Houston, Texas.
Casper Ruud will be hoping a return to clay can help him turn his disappointing 2023 around. He is the top seed in Estoril this week and is joined by Hubert Hurkacz.
No Canadian men are playing on the ATP Tour this week.
Under the Radar:
Gabriel Diallo reached his second consecutive ATP Challenger quarter-final last week in Lille, France, losing to second seed Jurij Rodionov.
Alexis Galarneau and Steven Diez are in ATP Challenger action this week in Mexico and Italy respectively.
Young guns Victoria Mboko and Kayla Cross are both competing at an ITF W25 event in Jackson, Mississippi. Bianca Jolie Fernandez, younger sister of Leylah Annie, is playing at a W25 in Pula, Italy.
You can follow the Canadians in action every week here.