Healthy Alcaraz Makes Strong Start At Indian Wells Masters; Medvedev, Ruud Today

by Staff | March 12th, 2023, 8:30 am
  • 1 Comment

Playing his first hard court match of 2023, Carlos Alcaraz made a strong to his Indian Wells campaign cruising past the Thanasi Kokkinakis in straights 6-3, 6-3.

The 19-year-old Alcaraz lost a total of seven points on serve and never faced a break point while breaking the lanky Australian three times.

“I surprise myself today with my serve,” said Alcaraz. “I serve really well in the first set and in the second set as well.

“I’d say that Kokkinakis, he didn’t return very well, that he used to do. But, yeah, this is something that I’m practicing a lot. Yeah, putting, let’s say, that practices the serving today in the game is really helpful for me, coming to the next rounds.”

Alcaraz says the leg injury from a few weeks ago is behind him.

“Recovered really well. Yeah, it seems today that I move really well. I felt really comfortable playing here. Well, more movement here.

So I think I’m ready and totally recovered from the injury.”

Alcaraz will return to No. 1 with a title this week.

Taylor Fritz opened his title defense having to rally from a set down to top 20-year-old Ben Shelton 4-6, 6-4, 6-3.

Fritz only face one break point but that cost him the opening set. Otherwise, the American No. 1 dropped just five points on second serve in the match against Shelton who is making his desert debut this week.

“I feel really good,” said Fritz. “Just getting through that match, I think that was an incredibly tough first match for me to play. He’s really tough, and, you know, all it took in the first set was one breakpoint, one break, and I never really had any other chances to get onto his serve.

“I’m super happy with how I didn’t panic under the circumstances of being down a set. The guy’s serving bombs, not winning points on his serve, obviously defending champion, a lot of pressure, he’s playing well. I didn’t panic. I stayed calm. I changed some things around. I kind of just figured out how I wanted to play and what I needed to do to get those service breaks and get myself back into the match.”

Elsewhere, No. 7 seed Holger Rune topped 27-year-old Mackenzie McDonald 7-5, 6-3. No. 8 seed Felix Auger-Aliassime ousted Pedro Martinez 7-6(7-5), 6-4. Ninth-seeded Hubert Hurkacz bested Australia’s Alexei Popyrin 6-3, 6-3. No. 11 Jannik Sinner handled French veteran Richard Gasquet in straights 6-3, 7-6(7-2). Hungary’s Marton Fucsovics shocked 16th-seeded Alex De Minaur 6-4, 6-2.

Tommy Paul, Jack Draper and former finalists Stan Wawrinka and Andy Murray also advanced. He’ll face countryman Draper next. Seeds Borna Coric and Alex De Minaur fell.

Ahead Sunday, feature matches slated in third round action include No. 3 Casper Ruud will meeting Cristian Garin, with Garin in front 2-1 in their tour-level collisions. Ruud was victorious in their most recent meeting in the 2022 ATP Cup.

No. 5 Daniil Medvedev faces Ilya Ivashka, No. 6 Andrey Rublev will challenge Ugo Humbert, No. 10 Cameron Norrie tests Taro Daniel, No. 12 Alexander Zverev clashes with Emil Ruusuvuori, No. 23 Alejandro Davidovich Fokina will challenge No. 13 Karen Khachanov, No. 14 Frances Tiafoe faces Jason Kubler and also Jordan Thompson will meet Alejandro Tabilo.

Matches Start At: 11:00 am
ATP [Q] Cristian GARIN (CHI) vs Casper RUUD (NOR) [3]
ATP Emil RUUSUVUORI (FIN) vs Alexander ZVEREV (GER) [12]
Not Before 3:00 PM
WTA Coco Gauff (USA) [6] vs Linda Noskova (CZE)

Not Before 6:00 pm
Not Before 8:00 PM
WTA [Q] Lesia Tsurenko (UKR) vs Aryna Sabalenka [2]

Matches Start At: 11:00 am
WTA Maria Sakkari (GRE) [7] vs Anhelina Kalinina (UKR) [27]
WTA Anastasia Potapova [26] vs Jessica Pegula (USA) [3]
ATP Frances TIAFOE (USA) [14] vs Jason KUBLER (AUS)

Not Before 6:00 PM
WTA Petra Kvitova (CZE) [15] vs Jelena Ostapenko (LAT) [24]

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One Comment for Healthy Alcaraz Makes Strong Start At Indian Wells Masters; Medvedev, Ruud Today

lylenubbins Says:

Nice win for Taylor, Shelton is horribly tough. So far IW shaping up nicely.

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