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Quarterfinal Awards: Sakkari Battles From The Brink Once More, Sinner’s Rocket Forehands
5 Min Read · March 16, 2023

With quarterfinal action at the BNP Paribas Open complete and the semifinals set, we took a look back at some of the standout performances from Wednesday and Thursday. Check em out! ⬇️


Most Ballistic Ball-Striking

🏅 [11] Jannik Sinner d. [4] Taylor Fritz, 6-4, 4-6, 6-4

It was one of those matches where practically ever rally was jaw-dropping. The sheer power of both Fritz and Sinner, the percussive ball-striking, the ability to casually change directions in rallies. Not even a stiff breeze, which came into play in the final set, could slow down the electric hitting of these two powerhouses.

One game alone – ONE GAME! – featured four winners of over 90 MPH from Sinner.

Best Comeback

🏅 [7] Maria Sakkari d. [15] Petra Kvitova, 4-6, 7-5, 6-1

Sakkari called it one of the best comebacks of her career. Down by a set and a break, she somehow found a way to flip the script on the two-time Wimbledon champion, and actually ended up winning in dominant fashion, closing out the match with authority down the stretch.

“Not only was I down a set and a break, but she made me play like an amateur in the first set,” said Sakkari. “She was playing so good. I had to try and focus on different things, I had to try and look at the other side of the net to see what I could do to put her in uncomfortable positions and I think it worked. I just tried to play physical.”

Extra points for winning with… bloody feet?

“All I can say is I need a pedicure because my feet are bleeding so badly,” Sakkari told the crowd with a smile after her win.

Most Miraculous Recovery

🏅 [5] Daniil Medvedev d. [23] Alejandro Davidovich Fokina, 6-3, 7-5

Wait, this is the guy who left the court under an injury cloud, with a badly swollen ankle after his victory over Alexander Zverev on Tuesday? Indeed, it was the same player, Daniil Medvedev, who just can’t seem to stop winning. The No.5 seed played a near perfect match against Alejandro Davidovich Fokina to win notch his 18th consecutive win.

Extra points for the bloody hand (nothing serious, naturally) – Medvedev has been the consummate warrior this week at Indian Wells, and he has the scars to prove it.

The Domination Award

🏅 Iga Swiatek 

The top-seeded Pole dropped just five games in her 6-2, 6-3 takedown of Sorana Cirstea. That makes 19 for the tournament, through four rounds. She has won her last 16 sets at Indian Wells.

Statement Match Award

🏅 [14] Frances Tiafoe d. [10] Cameron Norrie – 6-4, 6-4

Frances Tiafoe didn’t just wiggle his way into his first ever BNP Paribas Open semifinals. He stormed his way into it, attacking the 2021 Indian Wells champion relentlessly and using his athleticism in all areas of the court as he locked down a straight sets win over one of the toughest outs in men’s tennis.

Most Electrifying Forehand

🏅Jannik Sinner

Jannik the Fox speaks quietly but carries a legendary running forehand!

Hot Shot of the Day

🏅 Karolina Muchova 

The Czech has more talent in her right hand than most of us mere mortals have in our whole bodies.

Most Insane Defense

🏅 Carlos Alcaraz


Quote of the Quarters

🏅 Frances Tiafoe 

Frances Tiafoe talked to reporters about a variety of subjects after his quarterfinal win over Cameron Norrie, but his tales of talking shop with Lebron James definitely took the cake.

“I think everyone being at great at something has the same mindset no matter what you are, if you’re a painter or whatever you are. There’s a certain level of focus and commitment to whatever your craft is.

“Getting to know those guys and seeing that it’s not a cliche thing, it’s the same message, that anyone who is great, obviously, doing your business each and every day, the sacrifice you have to make for it. It’s funny, your parents tell you the same s*** all the time, but when you hear it from Steph Curry or you hear it from LeBron, it’s a little different. I’m sorry. Sorry, mom. Sorry, dad. It’s a little different hearing it from them. When they tell me that, yeah, I think it’s time to make some sacrifice.”


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