ATP Miami Open, also known as the Miami Masters, is one of the most recognizable and heavily-anticipated tennis tournaments of the year.
As part of the men’s ATP Tour Masters 1000 circuit, the Miami Open regularly features some of the best players in the world, traveling to Florida in preparation for the French Open at Roland-Garros, beginning in late May.
Miami Open History
The idea of hosting an international tennis tournament in Miami was born in the 1960s, It was a brainchild of top players, including Pancho Segura, Frank Sedgman, Pancho Gonzalez, Jack Kramer and Butch Buchholz.
The tournament was officially founded by Buchholz in 1985, At the time, he was executive director of the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP). Initially, the goal was to make the event the first major tournament of the year, dubbed the “Winter Wimbledon”. While that plan fell through, the Miami Open remains one of the biggest and most prestigious tournaments on tour.
The first Miami Open was held in February, 1985, at Rod Laver’s International Tennis Resort in Delray Beach. It was worth $1.8 million, surpassed only by Wimbledon and the U.S. Open.
Although a huge amount by the standards at the time, Miami Open’s prize pool has since grown to over $13 million, making it one of the richest tournaments on tour.
The next year, Miami Open moved to Boca West and its long-term home in Key Biscayne for 1988. Unfortunately, the Crandon Park facility was not up to par, repeatedly criticized for the extreme heat and humidity as well as the court conditions. Panyers panned the courts as among the slowest anywhere.
In 2017, ATP Miami Open struck an agreement with Miami-Dade County, moving the tournament to Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida. It’s been hosting the Miami Open since 2019.
Known as the Lipton International Players Championships during its earlier days, it’s since gone through six name changes.
After abandoning its name as Lipton International Players Championships in 1993, it was named as Lipton Championship (1993-1999), Ericsson Open (2000-2001), NASDAQ-100 Open (2002-2006), Sony Ericsson Open (2007-2012), Sony Open Tennis (2013-2014) and finally, the Miami Open presented by Itaú (since 2015).
Records and Information
Since it was formed, Miami Open has featured many memorable moments, and is widely known as one of the most popular and stacked tennis events on the schedule. While it’s seen many prominent names hoist the prestigious trophy, a few names stand out from the rest.
Novak Djokovic and Andre Agassi hold the record for men’s singles wins, each with six. Djokovic (2014-2016) and Agassi (2001-2003) are also tied for the most consecutive titles won (three apiece)
Djokovic is also the youngest men’s singles winner of the Miami Open, in 2007 when he was 19 years and 314 days old. Djokovic is also the only player in history to win four Sunshine Doubles (Miami Masters + Indian Wells Masters) in 2011, then 2014-2016.
Even though Djokovic is one of the most successful players of the Miami Open, he has not won it since 2016, nor has he made the finals. Since the Serbian star has confirmed he won’t participate in 2022, his “drought” extends to a sixth year in a row.