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Federer Seeks History In Indian Wells Final Against Thiem

  • Posted: Mar 16, 2019

Federer Seeks History In Indian Wells Final Against Thiem

Thiem pursuing his maiden ATP Masters 1000 crown

Five-time BNP Paribas Open champion Roger Federer may not have had to step on the court against second seed Rafael Nadal on Saturday, as the Spaniard withdrew from the tournament due to right knee pain. But nevertheless, Federer is on the verge of history in Indian Wells, one match away from becoming the first player to capture six titles in the California desert.

Federer, who is tied with World No. 1 Novak Djokovic at five Indian Wells crowns, will not have it easy in the final against seventh seed Dominic Thiem, who seeks his first ATP Masters 1000 title. This will be the pair’s fifth FedEx ATP Head2Head clash, with each player winning two of their previous meetings. Federer has triumphed in both of their hard court matches.

“I’m just excited to be in another finals here, to be quite honest,” said Federer, who is into his ninth Indian Wells final. “It’s not the way I wanted to get there in a semi-finals walkover, but as we know, it’s how it goes sometimes in tennis.”

 Year  Tournament  Round  Winner  Score
 2016  Brisbane  SF  Roger Federer  6-1, 6-4
 2016  Rome  R16  Dominic Thiem  7-6(2), 6-4
 2016  Stuttgart  SF  Dominic Thiem  3-6, 7-6(7), 6-4
 2018  Nitto ATP Finals  RR  Roger Federer  6-2, 6-3

Federer has flown through the draw thus far at the first Masters 1000 event of the year, winning all eight sets he has played. The 37-year-old has been broken only once in the tournament, and that came in the second set of his opening-round victory against German Peter Gojowczyk.

Federer, who by triumphing in Dubai earlier this month became the second player in the Open Era to win 100 tour-level titles, is in position to erase bad memories from last year in Indian Wells, where he missed out on three championship points before losing to Juan Martin del Potro in the final.

“I hope I can play a great match. It’s a big tournament, big final for me tomorrow especially after last year’s tough loss against Juan Martin,” Federer said. “I would love to go all the way this year, we’ll see how it goes.”

Across the net will be a hungry Austrian in Thiem. The 25-year-old carries plenty of confidence into the match after his two-hour, 31-minute three-set win in the semi-finals against Milos Raonic. The World No. 8 had not lost a set before dropping the middle set against the Canadian. But he is ready to push for a Masters 1000 breakthrough on Sunday.

Watch Highlights Of Federer & Thiem’s Most Recent Meeting:

“I think he’s playing very well. I think he’s using the kick serve very effectively. The spins, they really bounce up high here in the desert air. I think he’s one of the fittest guys out there and can hit the ball the hardest. I think this surface suits him well for that,” Federer said. “I really hope I can play aggressive tennis against him. But I like his style. He uses the spins and the variations very effectively and for that I think we’ll see some interesting points tomorrow.”

Before this tournament, Thiem, a two-time Mutua Madrid Open finalist, had made the semi-finals of a Masters 1000 event on hard courts just once. Coincidentally, that was the most recent tournament at this level: the 2018 Rolex Paris Masters. He has only advanced to the quarter-finals in Indian Wells once, and owns just one win against a Top 10 opponent on the surface (1-10) compared to his eight on clay (8-10). But he feels comfortable on the courts at the BNP Paribas Open, which he believes are similar to those at the US Open, where he pushed Nadal to a fifth-set tie-break in the quarter-finals.

“I was preparing here for 12 days before the tournament. That helped, of course, a lot. This surface and also the one in New York, for example, it suits me pretty well because it’s bouncy, especially during the day,” Thiem said. “It’s not too fast, so it’s a little bit more similar to a clay court. The biggest adjustment is the moving, that I cannot slide around.”

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Thiem has done a little bit of everything this tournament, from standing against the flowerbeds at the back of the court to return Raonic’s serves, to stepping up to the baseline to take gargantuan rips at his groundstrokes. One thing’s for sure — he’s going to try to use every tool in his arsenal to prevent Federer from lifting his 28th Masters 1000 title.

“It’s always something special to play him and also something special to compete in a Masters 1000 final. It’s only my third one,” Thiem said. “I know it’s going to be very tough, but same time, I will give everything to hopefully win my first title.” 

Did You Know?
This will be Federer’s 153rd tour-level final, but his first against an Austrian. Federer holds a 10-4 record against Austrians, losing one match apiece against Stefan Koubek (2001 Vienna) and Jurgen Melzer (2011 Monte-Carlo).

Not Before 3:30 pm
ATP – SINGLES FINAL – [7] D. Thiem (AUT) vs [4] R. Federer (SUI)

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When Is The Miami Open Presented By Itaú Draw? Schedule, History, Tickets & More

  • Posted: Mar 16, 2019

When Is The Miami Open Presented By Itaú Draw? Schedule, History, Tickets & More

All about the ATP Masters 1000 tennis tournament in Miami

The Miami Open presented by Itau is the second stop of the March Masters, and like the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, showcases the best men’s and women’s players over two weeks. American Andre Agassi and current World No. 1 Novak Djokovic have each won a record six titles at this ATP Masters 1000 tournament. Last year, John Isner became the newest American champion in Miami, joining Agassi, Andy Roddick, Pete Sampras, Michael Chang, Jim Courier and Tim Mayotte on the honour roll.

Previously held in Key Biscayne, the Miami Open presented by Itau makes its debut this year at the Hard Rock Stadium, home of the NFL’s Miami Dolphins. There is a 14,000-seat stadium inside the football stadium itself, a Grandstand, 12 tournament courts and 18 practice courts.

Here’s all you need to know about Miami tennis tournament: when is the draw, what is the schedule, where to watch, who won and more. 


Tournament Dates: 18-31 March 2019

Tournament Director: James Blake

Draw Ceremony: Monday, 18 March 2019 at 12:30 pm ET at the Itau booth

Are You In? Subscribe To Get Tournament Updates In Your Inbox

Schedule (View On Official Website)
* Qualifying: 18-19 March at 10am 
* Main draw: Starts 20-26 March at 11am & 7:30pm (22-23 March evening sessions begin at 8pm); 27-28 March at 1pm & 7pm
* Singles semi-finals: Friday, 29 March at 1pm & 7pm
* Doubles final: Saturday, 30 March, second match on centre after 1pm (after women’s singles final)
* Singles final: Sunday, 31 March, not before 1pm 

How To Watch
Watch Live On Tennis TV  |  View TV Schedule

Venue: Hard Rock Stadium
Main Court Seating: 14,000

Prize Money: USD $8,359,455 (Total Financial Commitment: USD $9,314,875)  

Tickets On Sale: Buy Now

Get Tickets Now, <a href=''>Brasil Open</a>

View Who Is Playing, Past Champions, Seeds, Points & Prize Money Breakdown

Honour Roll (Open Era)
Most Titles, Singles: Andre Agassi, Novak Djokovic (6)
Most Titles, Doubles:
Bob Bryan & Mike Bryan (5)
Oldest Champion:
Roger Federer, 35, in 2017
Youngest Champion:
Novak Djokovic, 19, in 2007
Lowest-Ranked Champion:
No. 45 Tim Mayotte in 1985
Most Match Wins:
Andre Agassi (61) 

2018 Finals
Singles: [14] John Isner (USA) d [4] Alexander Zverev (GER) 6-7(4), 6-4, 6-4   Read & Watch
Doubles: [4] Bob Bryan (USA) / Mike Bryan (USA) d Karen Khachanov (RUS) / Andrey Rublev (RUS) 7-6(4), 7-6(2)  Read More

You May Also Like: Miami Preparing For New Venue’s Debut

Hashtag: #MiamiOpen
Facebook: @MiamiOpenTennis
Twitter: @MiamiOpen
Instagram: @MiamiOpen

Did You Know…  The legendary rivalry between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal began in Miami, when the two players faced off in the third round of the 2004 tournament. Nadal, 17 years old at the time, dismissed the reigning Australian Open and Indian Wells champion 6-3, 6-3. The following year, Federer came from two sets down to defeat Nadal in the final, 2-6, 6-7(4), 7-6(5), 6-3, 6-1. 

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Thiem Tames Raonic To Reach Indian Wells Final

  • Posted: Mar 16, 2019

Thiem Tames Raonic To Reach Indian Wells Final

Austrian will play for first ATP Masters 1000 shield

What a way to finish! Dominic Thiem punctuated a thrilling semi-final victory at the BNP Paribas Open on Saturday with his 25th winner of the match, crashing the net to secure his spot in the Indian Wells championship.

If this match is any indication of the performance Thiem will have in store against Roger Federer on Sunday, fans will be in for a treat. Thiem booked his place in the title match with a highly-entertaining 7-6(3), 6-7(3), 6-4 victory over Milos Raonic in two hours and 31 minutes. Playing with great confidence from the back of the court, the seventh seed neutralised Raonic’s mammoth game and was in the zone on his own serve.

For the third straight year, the Austrian will appear in the championship of an ATP Masters 1000 event. He is targeting his maiden moment of glory in the desert. Under the tutelage of former Top 10 Chilean star Nicolas Massu, Thiem is already benefitting from the newly formed partnership. Following final defeats on the clay of the Mutua Madrid Open in both 2017 and 2018, the 25-year-old will be hoping the third time is the charm on the Masters 1000 stage.

“It’s always something special to play Roger and also something special to compete in Masters 1000 finals,” said Thiem. “It’s only my third one. I have pretty bad stats in the finals, so I know it’s going to be very tough, but at the same time, I will give everything to hopefully win my first title.”

With actor Ben Stiller looking on, Thiem turned in an efficient serving performance behind 77 per cent points won. He denied the lone break point faced, which came with him serving for the match at 5-4 in the decider. The Austrian captured his first victory in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series, with Raonic previously prevailing at the 2016 Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati and the Nitto ATP Finals later that year.

The first set saw Thiem fire 10 winners and zero unforced errors, while winning 93 per cent of first-serve points. The 25-year-old eventually took the opener in a tie-break, lacing a backhand winner down-the-line to take a commanding 5/1 lead.

Both players turned in dominant serving displays throughout the afternoon on Stadium 1. Just one break point was earned through the first two sets, with Raonic facing 30/40 at 2-1 in the second. It was promptly dismissed by the Canadian and he would stay the course in forcing yet another tie-break. There, he earned a fortuitous bounce as a backhand clipped the tape and dribbled over for a 5/3 edge. And two points later, Raonic would force a decider.

You May Also Like: Nadal Withdraws Ahead Of Indian Wells Semi-final

Thiem was dialed-in as the match entered its final frame, securing the first break of the encounter for 3-2. And as Raonic pressed to break back, a sublime drop shot winner restored Thiem’s command and he would deny a break point when serving for the match at 5-4 30/40. A volley winner sealed the victory after two-and-a-half hours.

“I knew it’s gonna be tough,” Thiem added. “His serve is unreal. I knew that there was going to be probably a tie-break. I played really well the whole match, basically. I didn’t make a lot of unforced errors. And I had a very good first-serve percentage. That was great.

“In general, it was a very good match because the only break point I had to save was in the last game, and that was what I wanted to do, to play my service games well and not give him too many chances.”

Perhaps the most glaring stat of the match was forehand unforced errors, with Raonic striking 23 and Thiem just four. Despite the defeat, the Canadian will hold his head high after another impressive week in Indian Wells. It marked the fourth straight semi-final appearance for the 2016 runner-up. Also a quarter-finalist at the Australian Open in January, the World No. 14 is pushing towards a Top 10 return in the ATP Rankings.

“There were definitely some things I would have liked to do better, but I thought I competed and I tried to figure things out as best as I could,” said Raonic. “It’s the way it goes. He played well. He did the smart things and he did the things better at the end.

“He was pushing me back. He wasn’t missing many first serves. Then he was aggressive from the very first ball. There wasn’t many times that I got to be on the offensive on the return games and when I did, I wasn’t efficient about taking advantage of it.”

In Sunday’s championship, Thiem will face Federer for the fifth time in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series. Split at two wins apiece, the budding rivalry saw Federer most recently triumph at the 2018 Nitto ATP Finals after Thiem won back-to-back encounters in 2016 – on the clay of Rome and grass of Stuttgart.

While Federer is bidding for his 101st tour-level crown, 28th at the ATP Masters 1000 level and a record sixth in Indian Wells, Thiem is vying for his first taste of Masters 1000 glory and first title on outdoor hard courts since Acapulco 2016. He owns an 11-7 record in tour-level finals.

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Nadal withdraws from Indian Wells semi against Federer

  • Posted: Mar 16, 2019

Rafael Nadal has withdrawn from his Indian Wells semi-final against Roger Federer with a right knee injury.

The world number two received treatment to the knee during his gruelling quarter-final win over Russia’s Karen Khachanov on Friday.

The Spaniard looked in discomfort during the match and only had a brief practice session on Saturday.

“It’s tough for me to accept all these things that I’m going through in my career,” Nadal said.

Swiss Federer received a walkover to Sunday’s final, where he will face Dominic Thiem after the Austrian beat Canada’s Milos Raonic 7-6 (7-3) 6-7 (3-7) 6-4.

“My goal is to be healthy as many weeks as possible to keep playing and at the highest level possible,” Nadal said.

“Sometimes I feel sad because I’m in a disadvantage to all my opponents.”

  • Teenager Andreescu reaches Indian Wells final

The 32-year-old also withdrew from next week’s Masters 1000 event in Miami with the injury.

Nadal and Federer, who have 37 Grand Slam titles between them, have not played each other since 2017.

‘The things I can’t control, I can’t control’

Nadal completed just one hard-court tournament in 2018 – the Rogers Cup in Canada, which he won – because of his injury struggles.

He was forced to retire from his Australian Open quarter-final in January 2018 and again during the semi-finals of the US Open.

Nadal reached the final of this year’s Australian Open, where he was beaten in straight sets by Novak Djokovic.

“I warmed up today and I felt that my knee was not good to compete at the level I needed,” the 32-year-old said.

“I’m just going to keep doing the things that work well for me and accepting that sometimes these issues can happen.

“All the things that are in my hands, I am doing well. The things that I can’t control, I can’t control.”

The Spaniard added he was confident he would be fit for the Monte Carlo Masters in April, which is one of the first events of the clay-court season.

It would have been the 39th time Nadal and Federer had played one another, with the Swiss having won the past five matches.

Nadal, however, leads the head-to-head 23-15.

They last met in the final of the Shanghai Masters two years ago, which Federer won 6-4 6-3.

Speaking to reporters after his 7-6 (7-2) 7-6 (7-2) victory over Khachanov, Nadal said he “could not guarantee how I’m going to wake up tomorrow”.

“I love to play on hard, but probably my body doesn’t love it that much,” he added.

“My feeling is there are a lot of players that love to play on hard, true, but their bodies don’t love to play on hard, either.”


Russell Fuller, BBC Radio 5 Live tennis correspondent

“I’m just going to keep going,” Nadal said after this latest hard-court setback.

He say he will continue to adjust his calendar – but hard-court tournaments will remain on the schedule. In reality, he has little choice, with half of the Grand Slams contested on that surface.

Nadal had hinted earlier in the week that he may skip Miami anyway, and perhaps his participation in the hard-court events which follow the US Open will be scrutinised even more closely.

He often has to miss them anyway. In 17 hard-court events from the start of 2018, Nadal has withdrawn from 11, retired from three and completed just three.

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Canadian teen Andreescu reaches final in Indian Wells

  • Posted: Mar 16, 2019

Teenager Bianca Andreescu has become the first wildcard to reach the women’s singles final at Indian Wells.

The 18-year-old, who was outside the top 150 players at the start of 2019, beat Elina Svitolina in three sets.

The Canadian will face reigning Wimbledon champion Germany’s Angelique Kerber, 31, in Sunday’s final.

Andreescu beat 24-year-old Svitolina 6-3 2-6 6-4, while Kerber, ranked eighth in the world, saw off Swiss Belinda Bencic, 22, in straight sets.

Andreescu, who is now ranked 60th in the world after starting the year at 152, had also claimed a victory over former world number one Garbine Muguruza on her way to the final.

“I really need a moment to soak this all in. This is just so incredible,” she told the California crowd. “This past week has been a dream come true.”

  • Federer and Nadal to meet in Indian Wells semi-final

Svitolina started the stronger in the first meeting between the two players, finding herself 3-0 up in the opening set.

But Andreescu fought back, eventually winning 26 of the last 35 points to take the set.

It increases the teen’s win-loss record for the year to 27-3 across all levels.

“I went for it. Like I always say, I went for my shots,” Andreescu added. “It was a crazy match. It was a roller coaster. I’m really happy I pulled through.”

Kerber ended Bencic’s 12-match WTA winning streak on Friday 6-4 6-2, to set up her meeting with Andreescu.


BBC tennis correspondent Russell Fuller at Indian Wells

Andreescu started the year ranked 152 in the world. She is now on the verge of the top 30.

A final in Auckland, and a semi-final in Acapulco preceded this run – not to mention winning an event on the ITF circuit and qualifying for the Australian Open.

The 18-year-old was cramping and looked shattered in the closing stages, but still managed to close out a 10-minute final game on her fourth match point with a smattering of drop shots.

She seems remarkably assured both on court and in interviews, and looks to have a game for all seasons, and for all surfaces.

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Kubot/Melo End Djokovic/Fognini Run To Reach Indian Wells Final

  • Posted: Mar 16, 2019

Kubot/Melo End Djokovic/Fognini Run To Reach Indian Wells Final

Sixth seeds to face Mektic/Zeballos for the title

Novak Djokovic and Fabio Fognini may have suffered early exits from the singles draw at the BNP Paribas Open, but they thrilled crowds in Indian Wells by playing entertaining tennis to advance to the doubles semi-finals. Sixths seeds Lukasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo battled hard to bring their run to an end, though, defeating Djokovic and Fognini 7-6(5), 2-6, 10-6 on Friday to reach the first ATP Masters 1000 championship match of the year.

“I think the fact we played together for a long time, this makes a difference. We know against these guys we had to play to win,” Melo said. “I think we were aggressive, how we should be, in important moments. We do what we have to do and most of the time for us, it pays off. I’m very happy with this, so let’s go forward for tomorrow to the finals. We’re really looking forward to this one.”

Kubot/Melo and Djokovic/Fognini won the same number of points (71) in the match, but the Polish-Brazilian duo was a step ahead in the key moments, triumphing after one hour and 40 minutes. They will face Nikola Mektic and Horacio Zeballos on Saturday for the Masters 1000 trophy.

“Now we face two doubles players. They know how we play, we know how they play, so it’s going to be a very strategic match. Like today we have to go and try our best, focus, because if not they’re going to win,” Melo said. “They’re such great players. We have been playing very good, so I hope we keep this level and hold the trophy.”

Kubot and Melo have played together full-time since 2017, whereas this is only Mektic and Zeballos’ second tournament together. Kubot and Melo are giving the Croat-Argentine duo its due, though, and they know they’ll need to be at their best to earn their fifth Masters 1000 crown as a tandem.

“They have a lot of wins together this year already and are also full of confidence, so we’re looking forward for another [tough] match,” Kubot said. “But we want to enjoy the match we just finished.”

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