Indian Wells – 4R
59, 54 and 66 minutes respectively – it is the match time of Novak Djokovic‘s first three rounds at Indian Wells this year. The Serb has been in terrifying form since the beginning of the tournament, winning the first set ‘6-0’ in each of his matches! (the same feat achieved also Thomas Muster in Bari 23 years ago). Djokovic was merciless even for his friend and this week’s doubles partner Viktor Troicki , who broke the racquet with his thigh in the last game because of enormous frustration! “I don’t think I’m playing incredible tennis,” Djokovic comments “I think I’m playing really, really solid and getting a lot of balls back into the court and making my opponent play an extra shot… I think he had a very bad match in general. But I was very solid, and I keep on playing well, so this is what makes me happy.” Juan Martin del Potro confirms his resurgence after the injury with his ninth win in a row. The Argentinian needed two tie-breaks (2 hours, 21 minutes) to overcome Philipp Kohlschreiber. The German had two break points at 4:3 and was two points away at 5:4 in the 1st set, but the 2nd set was even more dramatic. Del Potro already led 3:0* (40-15) when Kohlschreiber played a risky overhead from the back of the court. Afterwards he took a ribreak and saved a match point in the 10th game to build a seemingly decisive 6:1 lead in the tie-break. Del Potro managed to save five consecutive set points (!) and converted his third match point with an ace. Similar progress occurred in the 2nd set of a Roddick-Gasquet match. The Frenchman after winning the 1st set, led 4:2 with a double break point in the 2nd set. Roddick escaped and had three set points in the 12th game. In the tie-break, the American once again erased a deficit (2:5), but Gasquet won the last two points, converting his first match point with an excellent backhand return down the line.
In doubles there was an intriguing situation that four best singles players in the world, would face each other in the semifinals! In the second quarterfinal Andy Murray (teamed up with his brother Jamie) was beaten though, by the experimental team (for the first time together) Oleg Dolgopolov / Xavier Malisse. The Brits were on their way to a straight sets victory, but Jamie committed four straight double faults (!) at 3:0 (40-0) in the 2nd set, and Dog with X-Man won six straight games. In the super tie-break the Murrays again were close to victory, led 6:1 & 8:4 only to lose the last six points of the match!
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