Indian Wells is getting woozy. Big wins, puzzling losses, falling seeds, big match hangovers. Makes me glad I’m not a betting woman. Here’s a quick report on Wednesday’s action at Indian Wells.
Grrr. Marcos Baghdatis failed to follow up his career best win over Roger Federer, losing to Tommy Robredo 5-7, 6-0, 4-6 in his next match. It was a “gutsy” win by the Spaniard, who was struggling with a tummy ache. Given the scheduling and his achievement the night before, Marcos was obviously struggling with a hangover.
Nole, Nole, Nole. That’s what you get for playing Davis Cup. Sucker. No, really, it’s not a huge surprise that Novak Djokovic lost in the Round of 16 to Ivan Ljubicic. He was running on fumes in Belgrade and the needle went behind the E on Wednesday. The straight talking Ivan tells it like it is:
“He has to aim to be 100 percent fit if he wants to win this tournament, and he wasn’t. If I didn’t get him, somebody would on the way. He was already struggling in Dubai. He played long matches there, and after that he went to Serbia, played Davis Cup, and then traveled here.” (via the AP)
It’s still a great win for Ljubicic, or JuJuBee, as I affectionately call him. At 31-years-old (and one of the oldest looking 31-year-olds I’ve ever seen) the former World No. 3 is back in the Top 25 and rising.
No. 3 seed Elena Dementieva was the big loser on the women’s side, going out in straight sets to Agnieszka Radwanska. She’s now 2-4 against the Pole. Honestly, I just don’t “get” Ags. What are her weapons? What’s her motivation? Why’s she in the top 10 all the time? I’m so confused. Matt Cronin tries to explain – click here.
Second seed Caroline Wozniacki is still remaining in the draw after a tough three set victory over Zheng Jie. She’ll play BFF Radwanska in the semifinals.
Rafael Nadal is the highest men’s seed remaining in the Indian Wells draw, surviving a 7-5, 3-6, 6-3 match vs. John Isner, who is proving himself to be the immediate future of American tennis. This was a good run for John, and another “good” loss after those impressive efforts in Davis Cup vs Serbia. Pretty soon he’ll be so good that there won’t be such a thing as good losses anymore.
“Maybe will make a top player, a really top player, no?” Nadal said, in his delightful Spanglish. “Better don’t just talk more now? Because if he improves just a little bit more, gonna be very difficult to stop him, no?”
Here’s Isner on his current place in the game:
“I’m right there,” Isner said. “I know I’m improving, and I feel like I’m gobbling up ground on these guys, little by little.”
He also said, “Experience helps. I’ve never played any of those guys before, and now I’ve played with them: [Andy] Murray, [Novak] Djokovic and Nadal, all within two months of each other.
“I think the next time I play these guys, I can give them a better match.”
Nadal/Isner quotes via the LATimes
Both Nadal and Isner are still alive in the doubles draw, returning to the courts after their singles match to win the quarterfinals with their respective partners.
Nadal will play Tomas Berdych in the singles quarterfinals, the Czech taking out Victor Troicki 6-1, 6-3. Whenever Rafa and Tomas play each other, I find this video on youtube:
Ah yes, Soderling. He dominated Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-3, 6-4 on Wednesday. At least my other personal fave, Juan Monaco, is through, beating Garcia-Lopez in three. Andy Roddick took out Jurgen Melzer and Nicolas Almagro retired vs. Andy Murray with an ankle injury.
The men’s quarterfinals are as follows: Robredo vs. Roddick, Murray vs. Soderling, Berdych vs. Nadal, Ljubicic vs. Monaco.
There are still two women’s quarterfinals to play: Kleybanova vs. Jankovic and Stosur vs. Martinez Sanchez.