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Women's First Round: Angelique Kerber Continues Comeback, Volynets Powers Through
3 Min Read · March 6, 2024

Day one of the WTA first round kicked off Wednesday, with exciting tennis action all day long at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. Here were some of the top storylines from day one:

California Kid Volynets Muscles Past Mirra Andreeva 

All eyes were on rising teen Mirra Andreeva on Wednesday as the World No. 38 sought to make her presence felt on her Indian Wells debut. Instead, it was Walnut Creek, California native Katie Volynets who came away with the win. 

The No. 131-ranked wild card squeezed through two tight sets to secure a hard-fought 7-5, 7-5 win, setting up a second-round clash with No. 6-seeded Ons Jabeur


It was a clutch performance from Volynets. She converted all six break points she saw, and saved four set points during a tense game in the second set as she reeled off the final four games to complete a rally from 5-3 down. 

Two games after saving the four set points, at 5-5 in the second, the Californian saved another pair of break points to take more wind out of the sails of Andreeva, and finally broke serve to close out her second career Indian Wells win. 

The result left an ear-to-ear smile on the face of Volynets, who soaked up the partisan cheers after a two hour and seven-minute tussle in Stadium 2. 22-year-old Volynets scores her fourth Top 50 win, and her second of the 2024 season. 

Katie Volynets makes it through to Round 2 at Indian Wells for the second time in her career, and for the first time since 2022.

Kerber Revival In California? 

36-year-old Angelique Kerber began her comeback from maternity leave in January, but didn’t quite hit her stride then, losing six of her first seven matches. 

After a month off, the three-time Grand Slam champion appears to be finding her groove at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. 

Displaying top-notch tennis from start to finish in Stadium 1 on Wednesday afternoon, Kerber sailed past former World No. 14 Petra Martic 6-3, 6-4, to book a second-round clash with fellow former Grand Slam champion Jelena Ostapenko.

“It feels so great to be back on court and playing here in front of you guys again,” an elated Kerber told the crowd. “I think this is what I really love, to play tennis in front of the crowd, giving all that I can. It’s so nice to be back here at Indian Wells.” 

Kerber, who gave birth to her daughter Liana in February 2023, is ranked No. 607 and playing on a protected ranking at Indian Wells. In both sets, the German gave up early breaks but quickly rebounded to take the edge in her first meeting with Martic since the 2012 French Open. 

The German broke serve four times from 11 opportunities, and won 69% of her first-serve points. 

“I was just trying to move well and keep the ball in the court,” the former World No. 1 said. “It’s always tough when you haven’t had too many matches in the last few months, I am just trying to stay here in the moment, trying to play as many matches as I can, trying to play point by point.” 

36-year-old Kerber, the 2019 runner-up at Indian Wells, is one of seven mothers contesting the main draw at this year’s BNP Paribas Open. She had a message for her baby girl, which she shared with the crowd after her victory: 

“It’s crazy how fast one year went,” she said. “The message for her would be to follow your heart, enjoy what you love, and dream big.” 

To view more scores from Round 1, click below:

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