Indian Wells – 3R

20-year-old Milos Raonic [37] and one and a half year younger Ryan Harrison [152] might be two of the Top 5 players of the current decade. Today they met  (both participating in the tournament thanks to “wild cards”) for the first time in a high quality match – in front of a packed house on Stadium Two – which lasted 2 hours, 29 minutes. Harrison wasted a triple mini-match point in the 2nd set, but stayed cool and built a 5:2 lead in the 3rd set, having a match point on serve. Raonic fought it off with a help of the net-cord, saved also another two match points in the 10th game to obtain a break point for himself! Harrison delivered a solid service winner in that very difficult situation, then got a point with a great volley and finished the match off with his 11th ace (Raonic fired 17). It’s been a breakthrough tournament for the 18-year-old American, who for the first time in his career won three consecutive matches on the main level. He will be awarded in the next round facing Roger Federer [2]. Harrison speaks on the tournament
The former No. 1 in the world, needed only 58 minutes to demolish Juan-Ignacio Chela [32]. The other best players in the world, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic won their matches in similar style, Nadal needed 10 minutes more than Federer, Djokovic 4 minutes less to advance to the fourth round. Djokovic’s ‘6-0, 6-1’ over Ernests Gulbis (his first tournament under Darren Cahill’s coaching) is astonishing, especially that the Latvian [34] began the match with a triple break point. Djokovic: “He’s unpredictable; he has a very strong serve and he has a powerful ground-strokes, but if he’s not patient and not hitting the right balls like today, he can miss a lot“.
Not only Harrison has been playing a tournament of life, a qualifier Somdev Devvarman [84] as well. The 26-year-old Hindu, was *2:5 down in the final set tie-break against Xavier Malisse but managed to win the last five points of the match. Philipp Kohlschreiber and Robin Soderling have a stunning frequency of playing long tie-breaks against each other. In their sixth career meeting (counting a qualifying match), they played the fifth at least 14-point tie-break, and the German won four of them, this time 10-8 (the whole match 7-6, 6-4), saving five set points, two on Soderling’s serve in the same style – with a forehand return!

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