You guys. This time difference is KILLING me. I get that it’s only three hours and everything, but my body is so confused. I blame Daylight Savings time. By the time enough things have happened at Indian Wells for me to have an opinion and write, my brain is too exhausted for cohesive thoughts to come out. Trust me, I’ve tried. It’s not pretty.
So, instead of me freaking out about writing something, I figured it might be best for all of us to just to review Day 9 by looking at some pictures. Who doesn’t love pictures?
(Random sidenote: Juan José is taking a break from tennis as he adjusts to a new full-time job, so we’re a bit short staffed here at The Changeover. Jeff is aiding us with his expertise, but we are open to new contributors–if you have any ideas for pieces, feel free to e-mail us.)
Anyways, enough of the business stuff. Here’s a look at the highlights from Day 9:
Fernando Verdasco CRUSHED Richard Gasquet and is now in a fabulous section of the draw where he has a legitimate chance to make the SEMIFINALS. Of a tennis tournament. In singles.
Fer was only 2-3 on the year coming into Indian Wells, so it’s safe to say that this run of form is unexpected.
Playing Verdasco in the fourth round today will be Johnny Isner, who has been shockingly economical with his wins over Nikolay Davydenko and Rendy Lu. See John? IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE THAT HARD.
Grigor Dimitrov was NOT no. 1 in his match against Ernests Gulbis. Despite hitting shots like this…
Mr. Flirty Sour himself fell to Gulbis 7-5 in the third.
That form. I just don’t get it.
Gulbis has a wonderful opportunity to make it to his fifth Masters Series quarterfinal, seeing as his fourth-round foe is the blindingly bright Roberto Bautista-Agut. The surging Spaniard took out Jarkko in a third-set tiebreaker.
Speaking of The Armada, Feliciano Lopez is still alive as well. (Seriously…there are three Spaniards left in the IW draw on Day 10, and none of them are Rafael Nadal. TENNIS IS SO WEIRD.) There were no pictures of Feli from his win over Mikhail Kukushkin–apparently that wasn’t a sexy enough match for the Getty photogs–but don’t you just love the surprised look on his face as he hits that backhand?? “OMG WHAT IS THE BALL DOING HERE GET AWAY FROM ME.”
Feli will face Changeover favorite Julien Benneteau in the fourth round. Benny has only made it to the fourth round of Indian Wells once–way back in 2007–and he has only made one Masters quarterfinal in his entire career! Here’s how he celebrated his win over Dominic Thiem:
Marin “the Mighty” Cilic is in the middle of a resurgence. He took out Robredo with ease. His next opponent will be a bit more tricky.
Yeah, THAT GUY is still in the draw. Remember him? Somehow Djokovic has avoided the upset bug, although he did drop a set to Alejandro Gonzalez. There are no pictures of poor Gonzo on Getty, and I’m guessing that’s because they have no clue who he is.
Now, moving onto the ladies!
Your no. 1 seed is seamlessly moving through the draw, which, let’s face it, is weird. She took out CanWoz in straight sets, but it did take her ELEVEN match points to seal the victory.
Just because. Isn’t it nice to see Wozniak back in action though? I hope this run is a sign of things to come.
I said before the tournament that I was excited to see whether Dominika Cibulkova could keep her run of good form going in such a big tournament. Turns out? She can. She absolutely destroyed Petra Kvitova in the fourth round, and now gets an Australian Open final rematch with Li Na in the quarterfinals. Unfortunate draw for both considering the weaker quarters elsewhere.
Killer Flavia destroyed her countrywoman Camilla Giorgi in their fourth-round encounter, 6-2 6-1. Sergio was not amused.
Pennetta, who has never been this far at Indian Wells before, will face Sloane Stephens in the quarterfinals. Pretty great opportunity for both.
Stephens has been incredibly on point so far this tournament, which I believe officially moves Indian Wells above Miami as the official “Fifth Slam.” She took out Alisa Kleybanova in the fourth round–but let’s pause a second to give Kleybs a huge kudos for making it to the fourth round. She looked like her old self at times during this tourney, which is inspirational to see.
Simona Halep continued to be awesome as she took out Eugenie Bouchard in a match-up that I think/hope we will be seeing for years to come. (Jeff wrote about the implications of that win.)
Halep will face Casey Dellacqua in the quarterfinals. The Aussie advanced when Lauren Davis had to withdraw due to food poisoning, which was, in my professional opinion, a bummer.
In a battle of The Formers, Jelena Jankovic proved that she is the superior by absolutely trouncing Caroline Wozniacki, 6-3 6-1 in just over an hour. Ouch.
Jankovic will take on Agnieszka Radwanska today in the first night match–Radwanska took out Alize Cornet in straight sets.
Anyone feel a bit more like they’re at Indian Wells? No? Okay, me neither, but it was fun to look at the pictures.
Here’s the OOP for Day 10. I’m most excited to Radwanska/Jankovic, Dolgopolov/Fognini, Federer/Haas, and Benneteau/Lopez. What about you?