Miami, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Americans Donald Young and Jack Sock were a pair of easy first-round winners Wednesday at the $5.4 million Miami Open -- the second straight Masters 1000 event on the ATP World Tour.
The 25-year-old left-handed Young was leading Yen-Hsun Lu 5-1 in the first set on Day 1 when the Taiwanese player retired due to a neck injury, while the 22- year-old big-hitting Sock sacked Japan's Go Soeda 6-3, 6-4 on the hardcourts at the Tennis Center at Crandon Park. Young and Sock are slotted 44th and 45th, respectively, in the ATP rankings.
Up next for Young will be third-seeded Australian Open runner-up and two-time Miami titlist Andy Murray.
Meanwhile, former top-10 performer Nicolas Almagro of Spain edged out Ukrainian Sergiy Stakhovsky 6-3, 6-7 (3-7), 6-4 to set-up a second-round affair with his former world No. 1 compatriot, Rafael Nadal.
Also, Finnish veteran Jarkko Nieminen eased past Aussie Marinko Matosevic 6-3, 6-3; Argentine Carlos Berlocq topped promising Aussie Thanasi Kokkinakis 6-4, 3-6, 6-2; Jan-Lennard Struff overcame fellow German Benjamin Becker 3-6, 7-6 (12-10), 6-4; unknown Korean Hyeon Chung surprised Spaniard Marcel Granollers 6-0, 4-6, 6-4; Aussie James Duckworth snuck past Bosnian Damir Dzumhur 6-3, 3-6, 6-3; Dutchman Robin Haase vanquished Brit Kyle Edmund 6-2, 6-2; and Filip Krajinovic overcame fellow Serb Dusan Lajovic 2-6, 7-6 (7-5), 4-2, retired.
The top seeds here are Australian Open and Wimbledon champion Novak Djokovic, the French Open king Nadal, Murray, and U.S. Open finalist Kei Nishikori. The four-time Miami champion Djokovic beat the four-time runner-up Nadal in last year's marquee finale, which was a rematch of the 2011 final that was also captured by Djokovic in South Florida. The great Nadal has yet to title in Miami.
Last week's Indian Wells Masters runner-up and two-time Miami winner Roger Federer is not playing at this mandatory event. Although participation in the Miami Open is mandatory for top players on both the ATP and WTA tours, there can be exceptions for players who meet certain career milestones.
The 2015 Miami champ will claim $900,400.