Thursday, 16 March 2017

Pliskova and Kuznetsova into semis

The first semi finalists have been decided in the women's BNP Paribas Open draw in Indian Wells, California.

An all Russian match up saw eighth seed Svetlana Kuznetsova displaying some of the tennis that won her Grand Slam titles in 2004 and 2009.  Winning all but one of the points on her first serve in set one, Sveta ensured that Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova was under pressure from the start.
The two break points created were both converted, in the first and last games of the set, and 6-3 was the result.

Pavlyuchenkova broke straight away in set two but Kuznetsova didn't appreciate the two game deficit and so denied Pavlyuchenkova another game.  The 6-3 6-2 victory shot Sveta into her first Indian Wells semi final since 2008, and avenged losses in the past two meetings with Pavlyuchenkova.

The second quarter final featured Karolina Pliskova and Garbine Muguruza.  
In each of the two sets, Pliskova grabbed the initiative and appeared certain to take advantage of leads in both.
However, Muguruza fought back strongly from 1-4 in set one, often using her confidence to come to the net and finish rallies.  A tie break eventuated, and this is where Pliskova reasserted control, rushing through 7-2 and taking a set lead.

Muguruza fell behind in set two and Pliskova led 5-2 with two service breaks.  Serving for the match, the Czech third seed was struck by a Spanish response highlighted by brilliant attacking tennis.  One of the breaks was retrieved, and Pliskova failed in her second attempt to serve it out.

Another tie break was required, and sadly an engrossing battle was stopped when at 5-6 Muguruza served a double fault.
Pliskova won a terrific match and for the second successive year reached the semi finals of Indian Wells.

Men's quarter finals were decided and for the second time in their two meetings, Nick Kyrgios has beaten Novak Djokovic, preventing the number two seed from defending his title.
Kyrgios now has the chance to defeat Roger Federer, who had a surprisingly easy win over Rafa Nadal.

Other quarter final matches will be:

Pablo Carreno Busta v Pablo Cuevas 
Stan Wawrinka v Dominic Thiem
Jack Sock v Kei Nishikori 

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