Fritz, Swiatek Theme Indian Wells Basic Game


American Taylor Fritz will face compatriot Ben Shelton or Italian Fabio Fognini as she begins the defense of her title this week in Indian Wells, while top-ranked Iga Sviatek could face 2019 champion Bianca Andreescu in the third round.

Fritz battled through agonizing pain to end Rafa Nadal’s 20-match winning streak and claim his first Masters 1000 title last year and will be hoping for another storybook finish after the main draw is announced on Monday.

Facing a depleted men’s field, Fritz could face Denmark’s Holger Runa in the quarterfinals. Seventh-ranked Rooney also won his first Masters title in Paris last year, ahead of 22-time winner Novak Djokovic.

Daniil Medvedev, who won his third straight title in Dubai this month, will face third-seeded Casper Ruud of Norway in the last eight, while Spain’s Carlos Alcaraz could meet Canada’s Felix Auger-Aliassime. quarters.

World number one Djokovic withdrew from the tournament on Sunday, while Nadal, who aggravated a hip problem in his second-round loss at the Australian Open and has not played since, is also out.

On the women’s side, Switek looks set to collect a second straight Southern California title after winning during a blockbuster undefeated streak a year ago.

She could face WTA Finals champion Caroline Garcia in the quarter-finals after starting her campaign against American Claire Liu or Belgium’s Alison van Uytvanck, with Canada’s Andreescu also receiving a first-round bye.

After her first Grand Slam win in Australia, second seed Aryna Sabalenka will face either Alize Cornet or Evgenia Rodina to open the tournament. She has a chance to exact some revenge on her potential fourth-round opponent Barbora Krejcikova as the 2021 French Open winner ended her 13-match winning streak in Dubai last month.

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