Indian Wells third round action continues Sunday in the California desert as bottom-half seeds battle for coveted Round of 16 spots at the 2023 BNP Paribas Open. Scroll down for the rundown on all the ATP singles action from across the grounds…
The sun was shining and the good vibes were rolling for Chile’s Cristian Garin on Sunday at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. The former World No.17 – now ranked 97 – had to make his way into the main draw through qualifying; now he’s surpassed his best BNP Paribas Open performance by reaching the Round of 16.
He put his best foot forward inside Stadium 1 and was rewarded with his first Top 5 win in nearly two years as he took out third-seeded Casper Ruud, 6-4, 7-6(2).
🇨🇱 VAMOS 🇨🇱@Garin_Cris scores a first top 10 win since 2021, ousting No.3 seed Ruud 6-2, 7-6(2).#TennisParadise pic.twitter.com/4lNTbiRYJU
— BNP Paribas Open (@BNPPARIBASOPEN) March 12, 2023
“Casper is one of the players that I really admire,” Garin said. “I’m so happy to be playing like that, being aggressive, going to the net. That’s the way that I like to play and the only way that I have to beat these kinds of players.”
Garin cracked 39 winners in the one hour and 59-minute contest, while Ruud managed only 15 winners against 29 unforced errors.
Ruud drops to 4-3 lifetime at Indian Wells with the loss, and 4-5 overall in 2023.
26-year-old Garin has had Ruud’s number since they first met on tour in 2019 at Sao Paulo, Brazil. The Chilean improves to 3-1 lifetime against the two-time major finalist. Garin will face either 13th-seeded Karen Khachanov or 23rd-seeded Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in the round of 16.
Taro Daniel was close to backing up second-round upset of Matteo Berrettini with another eye-opening victory, but former champion Cameron Norrie rallied from a set and 3-0 down to defeat the World No.103, 6-7(5), 7-5, 6-2 on Stadium 3. Norrie improves to 11-3 lifetime at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden – he will face either Andrey Rublev or Ugo Humbert in the round of 16.
Germany’s Alexander Zverev has been a player very much in search of his best tennis in 2023. After missing the second half of the 2022 season when he tore three ligaments in his right ankle at the French Open and had surgery the following week, the German has been back on tour in 2023, but not with the same scintillating form that saw him reach No.2 in the ATP ranking last June.
On Sunday the 19-time ATP title winner took another step in the direction of peak form by earning a 7-5, 1-6, 7-5 victory over Finland’s Emil Ruusuvuori.
Zverev has been a hard-luck loser at Indian Wells on many occasions, including each of the last two seasons. He told the crowd he was happy to have their support on Sunday.
“I lost 7-6 in the third the last two years in a row, against Taylor Fritz and Tommy Paul, and the crowd definitely didn’t help me, which is fine – I was playing an American,” Zverev said. “I really appreciate you guys, it was a great atmosphere, and I really appreciate you guys giving me goosebumps, giving me all the feelings and all the emotions.
“I’m here to stay and hopefully I’ll continue playing this way.”
Zverev will face either No.5-seeded Daniil Medvedev or Ilya Ivashka in the round of 16.
The 14th-ranked German improves to 8-7 on the season and 10-6 lifetime at Indian Wells.
In other afternoon matches, 23rd-seeded Alejandro Davidovich Fokina edged 13th-seed Karen Khachanov, setting up a round of 16 clash with Chile’s Garin.