Del Potro Impresses on Opening Day of Indian Wells; Nadal, Federer, Djokovic Playing Doubles Today
Juan Martin Del Potro appears well on his way to winning Comeback Player of the Year for 2011. The Argentine who missed 8 months last season has really returned with a vengeance this year. In his first round match yesterday he destroyed a fellow Top 10 player Radek Stepanek 6-4, 6-0.
“Now I’m playing better than two weeks ago,” he said, “I need time to play better and better, and to have a chance to beat every player, especially in the Top 10. But I need time, I need work. Sometimes I feel a little bad sensation in my wrist, especially in humid weather, so I have many things to fight, but I’m glad with my present.”
Delpo’s wrist is still an issue – a minor one from the sounds of it – yet he’s still winning matches. The win over Stepanek increases his win streak to six and if he continues his improvement I’ll say he gets seeded at the French Open. Delpo’s ranked No. 90 now. He’ll play defending champion Ivan Ljubicic on Saturday.
Also yesterday, with the seeds still a day from play, there weren’t many big names or interesting matches. Americans Michael Russell, Ryan Sweeting, Tom Smyczek and Donald Young were winners. Ivo Karlovic, Richard Berankis and Janko Tipsarevic joined them in the second round.
Today, former Top 5 Nikolay Davydenko is on against Fabio Fognini. Milos Raonic (v. Ilhan), James Blake (v. Guccione), Bernard Tomic (v. Bopanna), Ryan Harrison (v. Chardy) and former champion Lleyton Hewitt (v. Lu) are also scheduled.
Interestingly, the doubles schedule today far outweighs with singles with many of the top singles guys using the event to hone their doubles skills or just use to the Indian Wells climate. In a rarity, the Top 3 singles players are in doubles action! Friday sees Roger Federer (w/ Wawrinka), defending champs Rafael Nadal (w/M. Lopez) and Novak Djokovic (w/Troicki) all on the doubles court. Olympic champs Federer and Wawrinka play the No. 2 seeds Nestor and Mirnyi.
Television and online streaming of Indian Wells begins tomorrow with I believe the top half of the draw playing – Nadal, Murray, Soderling, etc.
INDIAN WELLS FRIDAY SCHEDULE
STADIUM 1 start 11:00 am
 J Jankovic (SRB) vs [WC] C Vandeweghe (USA) – WTA
M Lopez (ESP) / R Nadal (ESP) vs  M Fyrstenberg (POL) / M Matkowski (POL) – ATP
A Kudryavtseva (RUS) vs  K Clijsters (BEL) – WTA
R Federer (SUI) / S Wawrinka (SUI) vs  M Mirnyi (BLR) / D Nestor (CAN) – ATP
Not Before 7:00 PM
[WC] J Blake (USA) vs [Q] C Guccione (AUS) – ATP
 A Ivanovic (SRB) vs K Date-Krumm (JPN) – WTA
STADIUM 2 start 11:00 am
[WC] M Raonic (CAN) vs M Ilhan (TUR) – ATP
T Bacsinszky (SUI) vs  V Zvonareva (RUS) – WTA
 F Schiavone (ITA) vs Z Ondraskova (CZE) – WTA
N Djokovic (SRB) / V Troicki (SRB) vs J Chela (ARG) / J Monaco (ARG) – ATP
M Melo (BRA) / B Soares (BRA) vs A Murray (GBR) / J Murray (GBR) – ATP
L Hewitt (AUS) vs Y Lu (TPE) – ATP
STADIUM 3 start 11:00 am
[WC] R Harrison (USA) vs J Chardy (FRA) – ATP
M Oudin (USA) vs  Y Wickmayer (BEL) – WTA
I Andreev (RUS) vs K Nishikori (JPN) – ATP
B Mattek-Sands (USA) vs  S Peer (ISR) – WTA
J Isner (USA) / S Querrey (USA) vs  M Llodra (FRA) / N Zimonjic (SRB) – ATP
N Davydenko (RUS) vs F Fognini (ITA) – ATP
Also Check Out:
Roddick and Fish Rolling in Indian Wells — in Doubles?
Andy Murray: The Courts At Indian Wells Are Very Slow, They’re Also Very Slow Here In Miami
Rafael Nadal: Finishing With A Victory Is The Best Way To Finish, Even If It’s Doubles
Andy Roddick Says “Ask The Boss Lady” Serena About Playing Olympic Mixed Doubles
To Rest His Knees, Rafael Nadal Might Not Play Indian Wells