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Indian Wells Tennis 2021: Daniil Medvedev Upset, Stefanos Tsitsipas Advances

FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images

After a slew of upsets on Tuesday at the BNP Paribas Open, Wednesday’s slate of matches in Indian Wells, California, saw much of the same. In all, five lower-seeded players advanced past their higher-seeded counterparts.

Men’s No. 1 seed Daniil Medvedev suffered the biggest upset loss of the day, falling to No. 23 Grigor Dimitrov in three sets.

You can take a look at a breakdown of that match below and the highlights from Wednesday alongside a rundown of the day’s scores.

    

Men’s Singles Results: Round of 16

No. 23 Grigor Dimitrov def. No. 1 Daniil Medvedev 4-6, 6-4, 6-3

No. 2 Stefanos Tsitsipas def. No. 22 Alex de Minaur 6(3)-7, 7-6(3), 6-2

No. 3 Alexander Zverev def. No. 14 Gael Monfils 6-1, 6-3

No. 11 Diego Schwartzman def. No. 6 Casper Ruud 6-3, 6-3

No. 8 Hubert Hurkacz def. No. 19 Aslan Karatsev 6-1, 6-3

No. 31 Taylor Fritz def. No. 10 Jannik Sinner 6-4, 6-3

No. 21 Cameron Norrie def. Tommy Paul 6-4, 4-6, 6-2

No. 29 Nikoloz Basilashvili def. No. 24 Karen Khachanov 6-4, 7-6(6)

     

Women’s Singles Results: Quarterfinals

No. 27 Victoria Azarenka def. No. 19 Jessica Pegula 6-4, 6-2

No. 24 Jelena Ostapenko def. Shelby Rogers 6-4, 4-6, 6-3

     

Recap

A second-set collapse was Medvedev’s downfall. After winning the first set 6-4, Medvedev took a 4-1 lead over Dimitrov and looked to be on his way to the quarterfinals.

Dimitrov then won the next five games to stay alive. In fact, Dimitrov took eight straight games and took a 3-0 lead in the third set. Medvedev’s frustration eventually boiled over.

José Morgado @josemorgado

Medvedev breaks a racket between the first and second serve. That’s a first.

In all, Dimitrov won 11 of the last 14 games on his way to victory. It was his third career win in 25 matches against a top-two seeded player.

“Over the past year, I have played him a few times and haven’t been able to find a way,” Dimitrov said in his on-court interview. “But today, I just felt something at 1-4, and I calmed myself down and started to take better decisions and started to control the pace of the game, which I really believed helped me. In the end, it was just very solid and smart play.”

For Medvedev, the surprising loss likely ends his chances of being ranked No. 1 at the end of the year.

José Morgado @josemorgado

And Medvedev’s little year end #1 hopes are over.<br><br>Novak Djokovic should do it one again.

In the quarterfinals, Dimitrov will face off against eighth-seeded Hubert Hurkacz, who cruised to a straight-set victory over No. 19 Aslan Karatsev on Wednesday. Medvedev said after his loss that he could see Dimitrov making it to the final.

Chris Oddo @TheFanChild

Daniil on Grigor’s finish: “About Grigor, I have not much to say. He played second part of the match better than anybody did against me in US Open that I won. So again, playing this level, I don’t see him losing to anybody, but let’s see the result.”

Second-seeded Stefanos Tsitsipas also faced a scare from Alex de Minaur, but he managed to escape with a hard-fought three-set victory. He remained undefeated against de Minaur on the ATP Tour with his sixth consecutive win over him.

de Minaur had it going early and was all over the court, including this incredible rally in the first set: 

ATP Tour @atptour

This guy is a human highlight reel 🔥<a href=”https://twitter.com/alexdeminaur?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@alexdeminaur</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/BNPPO21?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#BNPPO21</a> <br><br> <a href=”https://t.co/89lZ4LYfmz”>pic.twitter.com/89lZ4LYfmz</a>

The first tiebreaker was a nightmare for Tsitsipas, as he dropped the first five points and just couldn’t battle back. Tsitsipas looked to be in control in the second set, but de Minaur saved two set points and finished with a break to force another tiebreaker. This time, Tsitsipas came out on top to force the deciding third set.

Tsitsipas kept his foot on the pedal, taking a 4-1 lead in the deciding set as de Minaur seemed to run out of gas, and he was able to close it out to advance.

In another upset, sixth-seeded Casper Ruud was taken down by No. 11 Diego Schwartzman in straight sets. It was Schwartzman’s first top-10 victory of the year. After the loss, Ruud told reporters that he experienced fatigue and he plans on resting up for upcoming events.

Taylor Fritz continued his Cinderella run through the tournament, following up Tuesday’s win over fifth-seeded Matteo Berrettini by knocking off No. 10 Jannik Sinner in straight sets. The 23-year-old Fritz, who is seeded 31st, was down 4-2 in the first set before storming back with four wins in a row. Playing in his home state of California, Fritz was in complete control in the second set, jumping out to a 4-0 lead before winning the set 6-3.

José Morgado @josemorgado

Taylor Fritz gets a great 6-4, 6-3 win over Jannik Sinner to reach the QFs in Indian Wells, in his home state of California. Having some incredible run here!<br><br>Just like Norrie and Basilashvili, first career ATP M 1000 QF for the 23yo American. <a href=”https://t.co/Hq2ufMT0dK”>pic.twitter.com/Hq2ufMT0dK</a>

No. 29 Nikoloz Basilashvili was able to stay alive with a straight-sets win over No. 24 Karen Khachanov, but he faced some trouble in the tiebreaker in the second set. Basilashvili had match point early on in the tiebreaker but lost four consecutive points. He was able to recover with two straight wins to secure the victory.

On the women’s side, two-time BNP Paribas Open champion Victoria Azarenka topped Jessica Pegula in straight sets to advance to her first semifinal in Indian Wells since winning the title in 2016. Azarenka was on fire throughout the match with five service aces.

After the match, Azarenka said this would be her final tournament of the year, and she doesn’t plan on attempting to qualify for the WTA Finals, regardless of how she finishes in Indian Wells.

José Morgado @josemorgado

Azarenka insisting that she is changing and adding things to her game at 32yo. Also confirms that this is her last tournament, so won’t make a push to qualify for the WTA Finals if she wins Indian Wells.

In the semifinals, Azarenka will face Jelena Ostapenko, who survived a tough test in three sets against Shelby Rogers. Ostapenko jumped out to a 5-1 lead in the first set, but she dropped three consecutive points before she managed to close it out.

Rogers battled back in the second set, serving two aces and while Ostapenko committed three double faults. Rogers converted all four of her break point opportunities to force a deciding third set. 

In the final set, Rogers held a 3-1 lead but Ostapenko fought back to win five straight games and the match. The 2017 French Open champion will be playing in her first semifinal since 2018 at Wimbledon.

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