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The ATP Miami Masters is the second ATP World Tour Masters 1000 level event in March, following on from the ATP Indian Wells Masters that finishes the week before. Also known as the Sony Ericsson Open, the ATP Miami Masters is recognised as one of the most exciting events on the Tour schedule.

The event is hugely popular and in recent years has attracted large crowds. In 2011 the event welcomed a record overall attendance of 316,267 over the two weeks of the competition. It’s no surprise that the event is so successful. The world’s best are always eager to show what they can do here and claim their share of the 3,645,000 US dollars prize pot.

The ATP Miami Masters is played on the hard outdoor Laykold courts of the Tennis Centre at Crandon Park, Key Biscayne. The centre court at Crandon Park is regarded as one of the best in tennis. It seats up to 13,300 spectators, making it one of the largest tennis stadiums in the world.

The event was originally played in 1985 at Delray Beach, and relocated to Boca Raton the following year. In 1987 the competition was moved to it’s current home at Key Biscayne. Whilst tournament founder Butch Buchholz’s vision of the ATP Miami Masters becoming the “winter Wimbledon” hasn’t quite come true, the tournament has gone from strength to strength in Key Biscayne.

The ATP Miami Masters has an intriguing history. On three occasions the final of the men’s singles draw has been abandoned. The most famous of these abandonments is Tomas Muster’s withdrawal in 1989 when he was hit by a truck the night before the final. This injury put the former world No. 1 in a wheelchair. Muster displayed great determination to get his career back on track and he finally managed to win the title in 1997.

Along with Muster, the likes of Mats Wilander, Ivan Lendl, Michael Chang, Andre Agassi, Pete Sampras, Marcelo Rios, Richard Krajicek, Andy Roddick, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray have also won the ATP Miami Masters men’s singles.

The best doubles teams also compete, and have competed, in Miami. The Bryan brothers have won this event, as have Mahesh Bhupathi and Leander Paes, Federer and Max Mirnyi, Mark Knowles and Daniel Nestor, and Todd Woodbridge and Mark Woodforde. Woodbridge and Woodforde had incredible success between 1995 and 2000, winning the men’s doubles four times.

The ATP Miami Masters runs alongside the WTA Premier Mandatory event, which has also featured some of the most talented players of the Open era. Venus and Serena Williams have won this event eight times between them. Serena has won on five occasions, leaving her tied with Steffi Graf at the top of the title winners leaderboard.

Few tournaments generate as much excitement as the ATP Miami Masters. Whilst the competition never quite established itself as a Slam, it is undoubtedly one of the most significant events of the year.

To watch free live streams of the Miami Masters online, simply open a free account with one of our fully licensed live streaming partners such as bet365. To access the live feed, go to bet365 > live streaming tennis.

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