ATP Tour

Nadal, Federer advance at Indian Wells

2019-03-11 07:16
Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal (AP)

Indian Wells - World number two Rafael Nadal raced into the third round of the ATP Indian Wells Masters as Roger Federer made a less speedy but still successful start to his quest for a sixth title on Sunday.

Nadal, a three-time Indian Wells winner, needed just 72 minutes to get past overmatched Jared Donaldson, 6-1, 6-1.

Federer, who is seeking to break out of a tie with top seed Novak Djokovic for most titles in the California desert, looked set for a similarly easy time of it, but had to turn back a second-set challenge from German Peter Gojowczyk in a 6-1, 7-5 win.

Fourth-seeded Federer said he was relieved not to go to a second-set tiebreaker after falling behind 3-1 to the free-swinging German, who is ranked 85th in the world.

The Swiss regained the break and, after saving four break points to make it 4-4, cruised home.

"I struggled a little bit with my serving in that second set and that gave him chances. Because he was serving better, he started to swing more freely and then it was tough," Federer said. 

"I'm really happy I found a way in that second set."

Federer next faces compatriot Stan Wawrinka, a three-time Grand Slam champion currently unseeded as he continues his return from injury.

Wawrinka won a taut thriller against 29th-seeded Hungarian Marton Fucsovics, 6-4, 6-7 (5/7), 7-5, finally sealing it on his fifth match point after three hours and 24 minutes when Fucsovics lofted a lob long.

Nadal, playing his third tournament of a year that started with a crushing loss to Djokovic in the Australian Open final and included an early exit in Acapulco, converted five of his six break chances against Donaldson and never faced a break point himself.

He next faces Diego Schwartzman, who beat Spain's Roberto Carballes, 6-3, 6-1. Nadal is 6-0 against the Argentine.

"Today was a very positive step for me, and the next one is going to be against a player that we know each other very well -- we practiced a lot of times, and we played some tough matches," Nadal said. 

"It's going to be a tough one against Diego," he added, calling Schwartzman "one of the best talents of the sport today."

In other early matches, sixth-seeded Kei Nishikori of Japan survived a scare in a 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 (7/4) victory over France's Adrian Mannarino.

Mannarino, ranked 52nd in the world, served for the match at 6-5 in the third.

He couldn't muster a match point and double-faulted on break point, and that was enough of a window for Nishikori.

"I think in the tiebreak I played the best tennis of the match. I was really focused," said Nishikori, who opened 2019 with a title in Brisbane and then reached the quarter-finals of the Australian Open.

Nishikori next faces 67th-ranked Hubert Hurkacz of Poland, who defeated France's Lucas Pouille, 6-2, 3-6, 6-4.

Eighth-seeded American John Isner routed Australian qualifier Alexei Popyrin, 6-0, 6-2, the most lopsided win of Isner's career.

He'll play Guido Pella, who won his first title at Sao Paulo last week. Pella ended the hopes of another Aussie qualifier, Alex Bolt, 7-6 (7/5), 2-6, 6-3.

Tenth-seeded Croatian Marin Cilic downed Serbian Dusan Lajovic, 6-3, 6-4 to book a meeting with 19-year-old Canadian Denis Shapovalov, the 24th seed who beat American Steve Johnson, 6-3, 6-4.

Results on Sunday in the BNP Paribas Open WTA and ATP Masters hardcourt tournament (x-denotes seeded player):


Second round

Kei Nishikori (JPN x6) bt Adrian Mannarino (FRA) 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 (7/4)

Hubert Hurkacz (POL) bt Lucas Pouille (FRA x28) 6-2, 3-6, 6-4

Denis Shapovalov (CAN x24) bt Steve Johnson (USA) 6-3, 6-4

Marin Cilic (CRO x10) bt Dusan Lajovic (SRB) 6-3, 6-4

Radu Albot (MDA) bt Fabio Fognini (ITA x16) 6-0, 7-6 (7/4)

Kyle Edmund (GBR x22) bt Nicolás Jarry (CHI) 6-2, 6-0

Stan Wawrinka (SUI) bt Marton Fucsovics (HUN x29) 6-4, 6-7 (5/7), 7-5

Roger Federer (SUI x4) bt Peter Gojowczyk (GER) 6-1, 7-5

John Isner (USA x8) bt Alexei Popyrin (AUS) 6-0, 6-2

Guido Pella (ARG x32) bt Alex Bolt (AUS) 7-6 (7/5), 2-6, 6-3

Andrey Rublev (RUS) bt Robin Haase (NED) 6-3, 3-6, 6-3

Karen Khachanov (RUS x12) bt Feliciano Lopez (ESP) 6-3, 1-6, 6-4

Daniil Medvedev (RUS x14) bt Mackenzie McDonald (USA) 7-5, 6-0

Filip Krajinovic (SRB) bt David Goffin (BEL x20) 6-3, 6-3

Diego Schwartzman (ARG x25) bt Roberto Carballés (ESP) 6-3, 6-1

Rafael Nadal (ESP x2) bt Jared Donaldson (USA) 6-1, 6-1


Third round

Kiki Bertens (NED x7) bt Johanna Konta (GBR) 7-6 (12/10), 6-4

Garbine Muguruza (ESP x20) bt Serena Williams (USA x10) 6-3, 1-0 retired

Wang Qiang (CHN x18) bt Elise Mertens (BEL x16) 7-6 (7/4), 6-7 (4/7), 6-3

Bianca Andreescu (CAN) bt Stefanie Vögele (SUI) 6-1, 6-2

Elina Svitolina (UKR x6) bt Daria Gavrilova (AUS) 7-5, 6-4

Ashleigh Barty (AUS x12) bt Jennifer Brady (USA) 6-3, 6-2

Marketa Vondrousova (CZE) bt Jelena Ostapenko (LAT x22) 4-6, 6-3, 6-4

Simona Halep (ROM x2) bt Kateryna Kozlova (UKR) 7-6 (7/3), 7-5


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