Preview: Medvedev, Ruud, Rublev In Indian Wells Action

  • Posted: Mar 12, 2023

Preview: Medvedev, Ruud, Rublev In Indian Wells Action

Norrie, Zverev chase fourth-round spots

Third-round action commences on Sunday at the BNP Paribas Open, where Daniil Medvedev, Casper Ruud and Andrey Rublev continue their title quests at the first ATP Masters 1000 of the season.

The 2021 Indian Wells champion Cameron Norrie, 12th-seeded German Alexander Zverev and 14th-seeded American Frances Tiafoe will also take to court in a packed schedule. runs through some of the key third-round matchups on show in California.

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[5] Daniil Medvedev vs. Ilya Ivashka

Chasing his fourth title in a row, Medvedev made the perfect start in Indian Wells on Friday when he brushed aside 2022 Next Gen ATP Finals champion Brandon Nakashima 6-4, 6-3. The fifth seed has now won his past 15 matches, having captured hard-court titles in Rotterdam, Doha and Dubai in the past month.

Medvedev has never been beyond the fourth round in five previous appearances in California, but was pleased with his opening performance against American Nakashima.

Medvedev will look to build on that victory against Ilya Ivashka and grind down the 29-year-old with his brick wall defence. The World No. 6 Medvedev leads the 29-year-old 3-1 in their ATP Head2Head series, having won their past three meetings. Ivashka arrived in Indian Wells 0-5 on the season, but has not dropped a set in his opening two matches this week.

[3] Casper Ruud (NOR) vs. [Q] Cristian Garin (CHI)

Ruud enters his third-round match against Cristian Garin off the back of a confidence-boosting win against Diego Schwartzman. The Norwegian arrived in Indian Wells holding a 3-4 record on the season, but looked sharp against the Argentine to reach the third round for the third consecutive season.

Ruud opted to undertake a training block in February following the Australian Open and believes the effects of that are now starting to kick in.

“I feel like you do a training block for four or five weeks and you might not get the exact result you want right away. It might take a week, it might take a month, before you feel physically fresh and ready. I think I’m starting to get there,” Ruud said.

The World No. 4, who reached the final at the hard-court Masters 1000 in Miami last season, has not enjoyed much success against his next opponent Garin. The Chilean, who did not drop a set in his opening two matches, leads Ruud 2-1 in their ATP Head2Head series. However, the Norwegian did beat Garin in their only hard-court meeting last year.

[6] Andrey Rublev vs. Ugo Humbert (FRA)

Sixth seed Andrey Rublev is a 12-time tour-level champion but he is still chasing his first ATP Masters 1000 title. Eager to change that record, he produced a dominant display against Jiri Lehecka in the second round, downing the Czech 6-4, 6-2.

Next up for the 2022 semi-finalist is French lefty Ugo Humbert, who earned victory against Denis Shapovalov to reach the third round in Indian Wells for the first time. Humbert struggled to find his best form in 2022, but has started this year strongly, advancing to the final at an ATP Challenger Tour event earlier this month.

Rublev arrived in Indian Wells off the back of a run to the final in Dubai and leads Humbert 2-1 in their ATP Head2Head series. The Frenchman, currently No. 89 in the Pepperstone ATP Live Rankings, did earn victory in their previous meeting, defeating Rublev in the Halle final in 2021. Just as he did on that occasion, Humbert will seek to blunt Rublev’s powerful baseline game on Sunday as he chases his third appearance in the fourth round at an ATP Masters 1000 event.

Also In Action…

The 2021 champion Norrie has won his past six matches after triumphing in Rio de Janeiro last month. The 10th-seeded Briton will aim to extend that run when he takes on Taro Daniel. The Japanese star won their only previous tour-level meeting five years ago in Indian Wells.

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Zverev defeated Pedro Cachin in his opening match as he continues to build back to his best level after returning from last year’s ankle injury. The German will meet Emil Ruusuvuori, who defeated Zverev in Miami 2021.

Home favourite Frances Tiafoe takes on Australian Jason Kubler, while Stefanos Tsitsipas’ conqueror Jordan Thompson plays Alejandro Tabilo. In doubles, John Isner and Jack Sock will continue the quest for their third Indian Wells title together against Kevin Krawietz and Fabrice Martin.

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