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Aryna Sabalenka wins Miami Open match 4 days after death of former hockey player she dated

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Miami Open Tennis
Aryna Sabalenka, of Belarus, hits a return to Paula Badosa, of Spain, during the Miami Open tennis tournament, Friday, March 22, 2024, in Miami Gardens, Fla. Lynne Sladky / AP

Playing four days after the death of a former hockey player she dated, Aryna Sabalenka beat Paula Badosa 6-4, 6-3 on Friday in the second round of the rain-soaked Miami Open.

Sabalenka has asked for privacy for herself and the family of Konstantin Koltsov, the 42-year-old Belarusian who died in Miami on Monday. Miami-Dade Police said it was an apparent suicide and no foul play was suspected.

The second-ranked Sabalenka is a 25-year-old also from Belarus who won the Australian Open in January for her second consecutive title at Melbourne Park. As one of the 32 seeded players, Sabalenka received a first-round bye.

Rain delayed the start of the day's play by six hours, then more rain wiped out the rest of the scheduled play early in the evening. Wind also was a factor.

In one of the first matches completed, U.S. Open champion Coco Gauff moved on to the third round, beating Nadia Podoroska 6-1, 6-2. Gauff is ranked No. 3.

Fourth-ranked Elena Rybakina outlasted Clara Tauson 3-6, 7-5, 6-4. Also, Emma Navarro beat Storm Hunter 6-4, 6-3, and Ekaterina Alexandrova topped Donna Vekic 6-3, 6-4.

In men's play, third-ranked Jannik Sinner led Andrea Vavassori 3-2 when the all-Italian match was suspended for the day. Earlier, Tomas Machac beat sixth-ranked Andrey Rublev 6-4, 6-4, and Ugo Humbert edged Botic Van de Zandschulp 6-4, 6-3.


AP tennis:

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