Nadal, Del Potro, Murray Lead Way as March Madness Begins at Indian Wells
by Sean Randall | March 12th, 2011, 12:38 pm
  • 91 Comments

Watch a first Saturday at the Indian Wells Tennis Masters today. Featured are former champion Rafael Nadal, Juan Martin Del Potro, Andy Murray and Robin Soderling who are all heavy favorites.

Nadal, who has never lost a match at Indian Wells on odds years – he won the title in 2007 and 2009, is on against South African qualifier Rik de Voest. Rafa says he’s back healthy again after a tough start to the season.

“Last year I won a lot of things and I was healthy for almost all the time,” Nadal said. “This year I started the season with a little bit of unlucky because I get sick in Doha, and I was playing really well. And after that, I think I didn’t felt the ball perfect in Australia the week before and the first week of the tournament. I think the virus stays there already, so…But anyway, I passed the first round, the first week, and I was in the second week. Second week I was in a good position, because against Cilic I started to play much better physically and I was playing good tennis. So I had very good match against Cilic there. Very disappointing against David Ferrer second game I felt the leg. That’s what happened. I tried to recover very fast and practice in Mallorca, so that’s what I did. I played Davis Cup last week, and I’m here to try my best.”

Del Potro plays defending champion Ivan Ljubicic. The Croat has a history of playing well in the desert since his title last year has really done very little. Del Potro crushed Radek Stepanek in his first round and I expect him to get through Ivan.

Murray will play his first match against American lefty Donald Young. Soderling is on tonight against Michael Berrer. The Swede is 18-1 on the year.

So other good matches today include Fernando Verdasco v. Richard Berankis, Sam Querrey v. Janko Tipsarevic, Ivo Karlovic v. David Ferrer and Nicolas Almagro v. Michael Russell. I give Berankis a real shot at the upset.

The women’s WTA schedule is headlined by Caroline Wozniacki, Sam Stosur, Maria Sharapova and Sveta Kuznetsova.

So quick results from yesterday. James Blake got a nice three set win over big qualifier Chris Guccione. Blake now plays his buddy Andy Roddick tomorrow. Nikolay Davydenko and young phenoms Bernard Tomic, Milos Raonic and Ryan Harrison also earned victories.

“My goals are to keep playing better and better and improving, and I have been doing that well in the practices,” Raonic said after his first career Masters win. “I have mentioned how I’ve been improving from the baseline, playing a lot better, even compared to when I have been playing to date my best tennis since San Jose and Memphis. I’ve been doing a lot of things making sure I am improving and sort of try to keep getting better and better.

“As far as everything else is coming together, with the pressure, I know I’ll always be the one to put more pressure on myself than anybody else,” said Raonic. “So I have been doing that well, and I have been expecting a lot from myself. I have been doing a lot of good things, and I hope to keep doing a lot more.”

Raonic now plays Mardy Fish on Monday.

And on Friday the four of the Top 5 singles players – Nadal, Federer, Djokovic and Murray – all won their first round doubles matches yesterday.

Tennis Channel is on today live starting a 2pm ET with wall-to-wall men’s coverage. You can also find live streaming options at the ATP site:

SATURDAY INDIAN WELLS SCHEDULE

STADIUM 1 start 11:00 am
D Safina (RUS) vs [26] D Hantuchova (SVK) – WTA
J Del Potro (ARG) vs [14] I Ljubicic (CRO) – ATP
[1] C Wozniacki (DEN) vs [WC] S Stephens (USA) – WTA
[1] R Nadal (ESP) vs [Q] R de Voest (RSA) – ATP

Not Before 7:00 PM
A Medina Garrigues (ESP) vs [16] M Sharapova (RUS) – WTA

Not Before 8:30 PM
[4] R Soderling (SWE) vs M Berrer (GER) – ATP

STADIUM 2 start 11:00 am
[9] F Verdasco (ESP) vs [WC] R Berankis (LTU) – ATP
[4] S Stosur (AUS) vs [Q] L Pous-Tio (ESP) – WTA

Not Before 2:00 PM
[Q] D Young (USA) vs [5] A Murray (GBR) – ATP
J Tipsarevic (SRB) vs [21] S Querrey (USA) – ATP
X Malisse (BEL) vs [15] J Tsonga (FRA) – ATP
[11] S Kuznetsova (RUS) vs [WC] C Mchale (USA) – WTA

STADIUM 3 start 11:00 am
[19] M Baghdatis (CYP) vs [Q] S Devvarman (IND) – ATP
I Karlovic (CRO) vs [6] D Ferrer (ESP) – ATP
E Makarova (RUS) vs [8] V Azarenka (BLR) – WTA
S Peng (CHN) vs [7] N Li (CHN) – WTA
[Q] R Sweeting (USA) vs [27] J Monaco (ARG) – ATP


Also Check Out:
Stop the Madness
An Earthquake Hit Indian Wells This Morning, Here’s How It Looked On The Tennis Channel (With Player Reaction) [Video]
Indian Wells TV Schedule
Federer, Roddick Awarded Favorable Draws in Miami
Noah Part of March Madness

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91 Comments for Nadal, Del Potro, Murray Lead Way as March Madness Begins at Indian Wells

sheila Says:

would love 2c roger federer pull this out somehow. just read an interview where he said his goal is 2b #1 again. i love roger but wow thats a lofty goal especially w/nadal & djokovic being unbeatable. these 2 never seem 2 lose early in any tournament & i expect the same 4 2011. i’d be ecstatic if federer could somehow hold on 2his #2 ranking by end of year. most critics seem 2think thats ?able & djokovic will rise 2 #2. rogers gonna have 2 get something going, i think, 2 maintain, especially w/all these hungry young players. i also dont think roger has the same intimidation factor he once had. thats more nadal & djokovic.


Kimmi Says:

some great matches today. stream is on, yay!

delpo and Ljub should be good. hope delpo can win this. go delpo!

verdasco vs berankis should also be good. young berankis doing well this year.

Muzza, nadal, soda pop! bring it on! querrey vs tipsy..can sam win? cant pick him until he delivers in master1000 level.


fern Says:

Vamos Rafa! I hope you continue the trend of not losing at IW in an odd year.

I wonder if they’ll do a Rally for Japan in Miami. With Rafa being the Tokyo champion, he should arrange something.


Kimmi Says:

great two games from berankis so far. match shaping up to be a good one.


madmax Says:

time out for berankis. problem with the back?


Kimmi Says:

is that right madmax? i just went away a little bit, now he is losing big time. he started very well i thought.


Kimmi Says:

hmmm, he retires! at least i get a point for my nando pick :)


Kimmi Says:

OMG! bagdatis about to be bagelled by devvarman..i mean really? what is up with baggy? this will be a great win for devvarman.

what an upset! congratulations devvarman!


stu Says:

No Ferru!!!! You can’t lose to the service machine!

Well done, Devaraman!!


delposucks Says:

ATP ALERT! ATP ALERT! Some little bitch who can’t win a game without resorting to cheap drop shots has replaced Del Potro! Beware!


Kimmi Says:

delposucks – where did u come from?

ohh no ferrer! no way, what happened to the best returner on tour? in straights sets!! bummer!


Eric Says:

A bit harsh, delposucks… but fair point.

After Delpo broke him in the first game of the second set, Ljubicic has certainly been outplaying Delpo – about a million break points, but Delpo saved himself two or three times with pretty “cheap” drop shots. I’ll certainly feel bad for Ljubicic if and when Delpo squeaks out a totally undeserved victory here. Of course, there’s still the third set, but I dunno if Old Baldie has that much stamina…


Kimmi Says:

go delpo!

donald young is going with muzza shot for shot. tie break now!

muzza wake up!


Kimmi Says:

OMG! donald young is taking the tie break..2 set points!


Kimmi Says:

Forehand UE gives the set to young. wow! the guy is playing well..murray is not attacking enough though. young has been going for his shots more imo.


Kimmi Says:

dolgo and hanescu on serve..so many good matches. murray needs to be aggressive in this second set! c;mon muzza!

delpo vs ljubo on the third!


Kimmi Says:

muzza broken in the first game..not looking good! impressed with donald young though!


Kimmi Says:

and murray breaks back


Kimmi Says:

delpo breaks! go delpo. go andy M! donald young showing the talent people have been talking about.


Kimmi Says:

murray got broken again..he is losing!


jane Says:

Kimmi, what the hell? I picked Andy M to win the whole thing?! I haven’t been watching as I’ve been marking and following scores. What’s going on? What stream are you on? Arrrgh!


jane Says:

Murray’s first serve percentage is 48% so far for the match, ugh! But Donald’s is only 50% for the match and he has only 1 ace and 7 double faults. So how come he is winning? I had better tune in. Still time for Murray to win, but he’d better dig in SOON.


Kimmi Says:

jane – i am on tennistv. murray is playing well but i have to give credit to young. the guy is hitting the FH very big, when he gtes a chance he goes for it and they go in. his big shots seem to have more bite than murray imo.

murray has been overplayed today. aaaarg! i dont know but i am afraid muzza will fall down the ranking :(

mean while..delpo with 2 match points. ljubo defending champ is going in the first round.

Congratulations delpo!


contador Says:

no, no…..fight muzza fight! OMG wish i was there today people!so many favorites are on court right now, i see.

the weather here today is not as hot as yesterday, the breeze is kicking up and starting to have the shade of some high clouds. weather reporting live from rancho mirage. : )

murray is so much fun to watch in a practice match. he CANT lose to donald young, no!

delpo is da man! GO delpo, drive luby nuts LOL…JMDP is every bit as slow in setting up his serve and even was making steps wait when steps was serving. but gotta love him because even playing not his best, polito is clutch. the big points he comes through……somehow. it’s that champion thing, maybe.

NO! watching livescore murray did lose to young…..gheeesh. that’s very sad. i can’t believe it *shaking head*

ferrer out today, muzz out…..pretty much everybody i pick is going out. which may bode well for federer. he has not looked in form practicing. but i guess it’s not wise to go with what’s seen on a practice court.


jane Says:

I am flabbergasted and mad at Muzza. >:(

Am so sorry margot, but grrrr. He should have won this; what is up? Now all hell is going to break loose in the press and just make things worse. Gag!


Kimmi Says:

congrats to donald young for winning his biggest match of his career. maybe that is the start of good things for him.

muzza! what can i say…too bad. i had him to the semi jane. my bracket is going to burn!


Kimmi Says:

commentator said murray did not look match tough! that is true. poor decisions at time. oh dear muzza!


jane Says:

contador, thanks for live weather reports. There goes my “fantasy” picks, lol. I had Murray winning in a Nolandy final. Ha! I just thought Andy would come back fresh, it’s a slow hardcourt with high bounce, it just seemed right. He’s been in finals and semis here the last two years I think. Glug, glug, and going to drown my sorrys with some chardonnay. Even though it’s only 4:00 pm, what the hell!?

And Ferrer, where was his pitbull sense today? Was he unleashed? “who – who – who – who- who let the dog out?!” Speaking of dogs, Dolgo is serving for the match, boing boing pogo shmogo!


jane Says:

Kimmi sorry for your bracket too. :( Sorry for Muzza. Okay, a begrudging congrats to Mr. Young. And also a big woot for Delpo! Although I feel sad for the bald bomber too. Shame they had to meet so early as Ljuby was defending the title.


Kimmi Says:

this IW does not start well for top guys. 2 big upsets already. ferrer and now murray. bagdatis loses with a bagel to devvarman..weird!

murray did give away those games in the last set. what the heck muzza. double fault at wrong time.


Kimmi Says:

why is alex corretja still with muzza? muzza camp shaking head..they are so many of them. pls muzza fire them or something!

they are showing muzza match again, the last set.muzza with 2 errors to give young the match point…aaarg!! cant watch! donald young with a big yelp! he cant believe it. big fist to his camp. good for him.

He is going to be famous!


contador Says:

happy to read some people like my “reports.” i have to let it out, thanks for reading.

tigger serving for match!! boing, boing…..he got it!! wow, his tennis is nuts. the toss is low and he smacks it on the rise. some crazy tennis skills he has.

and delpo won i see. murray, what is the matter??

where i’m staying is 20-30 minutes from IW. and was just told: breezy here means breezier at IW. i dunno if that’s effecting any results but soderling could lose to berrer. i saw berrer on a practice court. he’s a german tank. and huge serve.

kohls, on the other hand, was not practicing well. so maybe he’ll come through after dropping the first set.


Novak_theClown Says:

Any streaming sites for the tournament. Feeling handicapped.


Karthick Says:

Guys, can some one send me the online link for live stream of the matches? seems atdhe.net is not working!!!


Kimmi Says:

i am trying to send you guys a link, but for some reason my posts are not showing up..

Is Novak_theClown and Karthick the same person?


Karthick Says:

Nope.. i am not the Novak_the clown.. I wont create any names defamming any players.. I am genuine.. I am a silent reader of this website and a great follower of all of your posts!!!


contador Says:

i don’t know about the livestreams this time, usually i do. but here in rancho mirage the streams either are not available or dont work. i hear it has something to do with time-warner cable in this area.

so all i have atm is a livescore : (


Kimmi Says:

didnt pick querrey! he has the first break…

ha-ha the moment i pick him he loses and when i don’t pick him…aaaaarg!


Kimmi Says:

sorry karthick, was just wondering as your posts came at the same time.

yeah, novak_theClown is not a good name!

I will try to post again

http://www.tennisform.com/default.asp?action=LIVEStream


contador Says:

being pulled away from tennis……but will be at IW all day AND night ( as bf coming for night session, for once ) will check in later.

it’s a curse Kimmi!! so many i pick this time and was SURE about are losing :/

sorry about muzza, margot, Kimmi…murray fans. watched him this week as mentioned in practice and was certain he’d get far, if not win.


Karthick Says:

Thanks a lot Kimmi.. it works.. and btw, what match you are watching??? and who are you rooting for IW champion???


Kimmi Says:

enjoy contador :)


sar Says:

He said his wrist was better before IW.I didn’t watch the match but I would say that Murray needs a coach, a real coach, not his mother and Corretja.


Kimmi Says:

karthick – i am watching tipsy vs querrey at the moment.

I am rooting for federer but big BUT..i hope he gets himself going here.

I am rooting for delpo and milos too, now that murray is out. any of those winning i will be very happy.


Kimmi Says:

what about you karthick?


jane Says:

sar, agreed. Murray needs to change something, although I am not certain what. A solid, steady coach would be a start.

contador, have fun. We’ll be watching for your updates.


Karthick Says:

I am a great Rafa fan.. And i want him to find his level back as in 2010 soon. So rooting RAFA.. VAMOS RAFA!!! and a fedal final would be feast for us!!!


Kimmi Says:

Enjoy karthick, rafa will be on soon! i am sure he is hungry to show the world that what happened at the AO was only a small blip


Karthick Says:

Thanks Kimmi…Lets see what happens…


Andrew Miller Says:

Donald Young…good luck third round! Happy for him, I hope too that this gives him some ammo to keep working


Kimmi Says:

querrey won..very solid today. coulda woulda picked him…


Kimmi Says:

simon thru over reiner schuettler! good!

kohls on a dog fight against an american smyczek (how does one spell that name?)


jane Says:

Kimmi I went with Querry thinking Tipsa might be tired from Delray and DC, plus Sam is on home ground. Same reason I picked Ryan Harrison, though I didn’t think Kohls would/could get upset!


Kimmi Says:

another upset looming. smycze ranked 189 with a mini break vs kohls.

wow! Big cheer for rafa, i mean B-I-G, when he walked to the center court. he is really making a lot of fans!


Kimmi Says:

good for u jane, you get two points. I got simon right at least, which everybody also got right aaargh!

kolhs with the mini break back..anyones match now!


jane Says:

Kohlie finally won – just squeaked through though! Nadal with the break, not surprising. :) But also Malisse breaks Tsonga right out of the gates!


jane Says:

Yeah, Kimmi I think I have Simon going kind of deep – have to check though.


Kimmi Says:

kohls wins. i am sure he lets a sigh of relief. sad for smyczek, he played well..only one point difference in the tie breaker. hope he is learning!


Kimmi Says:

i think de voest will win 2 games in this match. i can smell a bagel!


stu Says:

OMG Murray lost?!!! He seemed so confident in an interview clip I saw this morning. Oh no, downward spiral maybe? I hope not!


Kimmi Says:

ah bagel, i could smell it from here. OK, can he win two games now..come de voest just two games :)


Kimberly Says:

Kimmi, your sense of smell was on. Bagel.


Kimmi Says:

kimberly – i now hope he wins a game. it is just too sad for the guy.


jane Says:

Kimmi, you like your baking eh? :) Good nose. Could Rafa cook two bagels? He said this match would be “very difficult” – obviously not so much! He’s cooking!


jane Says:

But yeah, you kind of hope the poor guy gets on the board. / : (


Kimmi Says:

nadal draw has opened up big time. ferrer and muzza out, not that he needed it. I think nadal will get to the final hands down!


Kimmi Says:

BREAKING NEWS! de voest gets a game. now if he gets 2 games, my prediction will be perfect. Vegas here i come :)


jane Says:

Delpo still lurks for Rafa, also is Dolgo on that side? I think he will play Delpo or who? Anyhow, yes, not that Rafa needed it. Although his and Murray’s matches are usually awesome.

I see Rafa surrendered a breadstick for now.


Kimmi Says:

oh ya delpo. i dont know about him though..one match at a time for him, he has to go thru soda pop first. i don’t think dolgo can beat rafa.


jane Says:

Lol Kimmi – good luck in Vegas!

I picked Monaco but I wonder if Sweeting could win this? American players on the men’s side have done very well thus far.


Kimberly Says:

oh boy, i am 15238 out of 18272 on the draw challenge. Pretty poor beginning.


jane Says:

Kimmi!! You have the inside scoop hey? Great call on the 2 games!


Kimmi Says:

thanks jane. so proud of meself. de voest looks to be finishing with two game. ha-ha

almagor vs russel is going too. almagro with a set already. tsonga lost a set..c’mon tsonga, enough of the upsets already! I think i picked monaco too!


Kimmi Says:

kimberly – not too far from you. only one point separates us. jane is the “man”..ooops women :)


Kimberly Says:

kimmi-great prediction! Spot on.

I think I picked Monaco what’s up there?


Karthick Says:

Vamos Rafa!!! almost a perfect match for him. Kimmi, all the best for federer tomorrow


M Says:

Kimmi always has the inside scoop. :-)

Congratulations, Rafa!


M Says:

“Delpo still lurks for Rafa, also is Dolgo on that side? I think he will play Delpo or who?”

Yes, they will, jane.

DelPo v. Dolgo — tomorrow, I think (though the OOP comes up so late I am never sure).

Here is their H2H:
http://img853.imageshack.us/img853/5615/0312sat171.jpg


M Says:

“And also a big woot for Delpo! Although I feel sad for the bald bomber too. Shame they had to meet so early as Ljuby was defending the title.”

Also, yes, this. Though I’ve been rooting hard for Polito’s comeback, it was difficult to see Ivan out so early.


Kimberly Says:

Maria, this is thebsharapova I love!


jane Says:

I hope she comes through in straights! Tiebreak…


andrea Says:

great day of tennis. first time at this venue…really is stunning with all the crazy hills and mountains right in the background. front row for the young/murray match which was a nice win…donald really held it together in the clutch. malisse also started strong and i figured he would win. kohlshreiber hung in there but it was nice to see a raquet smash in person! love the 3rd set coming up with maria….


margot Says:

jane: “flabbergasted” just isn’t the word I’d use :( :( :(
Tomic for the title now please…
conty and now andrea too, thanx for your reports, so much more refreshing and immediate than pro journalists :)


margot Says:

OK not Tomic ;) but he will one day, he’s gr8! As I “picked” Rafa, then Rafa it must be!


jane Says:

margot not sure what word to use. But sigh.

andrea, lucky you. Sounds like a magical setting; I remember sar saying something similar when she went.

I think Gulbis could be tested by Lu, and I still say Golubev might (?) be tough for Nole; Golu did just beat Berdych at the Davis Cup so I think he’s finding some form. And as Young proved today: you just never know! Hope Nole gets at least to the QFs here.


The fighter Says:

Congo Rafa!!!


margot Says:

Where is dear “i am it”? Cos “The Curse of Corretja” strikes again :(


Kimo Says:

So happy for Delpo. Winning over the defending champ is definitely a confidence booster. Can’t wait till he’s back in the top five.


Kimo Says:

BTW, any of you know why Delpo is not jumping on the BLX bandwagon? He’s still using his K-factor racket.


dari Says:

i gotta see that murray/young match. did young just play his butt off or murray meltdown?

Top story: Federer Surprised By Shot At No. 1; Murray, Nadal In Action Wednesday
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Rankings
ATP - Oct 20 WTA - Oct 20
1 Novak Djokovic1 Serena Williams
2 Roger Federer2 Maria Sharapova
3 Rafael Nadal3 Simona Halep
4 Stan Wawrinka4 Petra Kvitova
5 David Ferrer5 Na Li
6 Tomas Berdych6 Agnieszka Radwanska
7 Kei Nishikori7 Eugenie Bouchard
8 Marin Cilic8 Ana Ivanovic
9 Milos Raonic9 Caroline Wozniacki
10 Andy Murray10 Angelique Kerber
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