Medvedev overcomes fitness fears to reach Indian Wells semi-finals, Sabalenka, Tiafoe race

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Daniil Medvedev’s right ankle was not a factor on Wednesday as he beat Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 6-3, 7-5 to reach the semi-finals in Indian Wells, where and Frances Tiafoe advanced to the last four.

Medvedev showed little ill effect from a twisted ankle of a knee in a three-set battle against Alexander Zverev a day earlier as he extended his ATP match-winning streak to 18 straight.

He booked a semi-final clash with 16th-ranked American Tiafoe, who beat 2021 Indian Wells winner Cameron Norrie 6-4, 6-4.

Australian Open champion Sabalenka, still building on her maiden Grand Slam title in Melbourne, defeated Coco Gauff 6-4, 6-0 to advance to the joint WTA and ATP Masters 1000 event.

Sabalenka will face 2022 runner-up Maria Sakkari after the seventh-seeded Greek beat two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova 4-6, 7-5, 6-1.

Medvedev arrived in the California desert riding high after winning titles in Rotterdam, Doha and Dubai in three weeks.

Long criticized for the slow hard courts at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden, reached the quarters for the first time since defeating Zverev despite twisting his ankle.

Medvedev said, “I’m really glad the ankle didn’t hurt much because it was hurting a lot I warmed up.” “I couldn’t walk well on the warmup.

“I tried to warm it up for as long as possible and a painkiller, which probably helped and I actually felt better and better during the match,” said the former US Open champion.

He raced through the opening set, needing the only opening to break the Spaniard’s serve in the second game as he lost just six points on his serve en route to pocketing the set in 39 minutes.

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It was a different story on the windy stadium court in the second set. Davydovich Fokina had break chances in each of Medvedev’s first three service games, only for the Russian to come up with a big serve to break him.

Davydovich Fokina was 0–40 up in the eighth game and Medvedev survived.

En route, Medvedev had another fall on the court, this time scraping his hand and requiring a trainer to bandage his bloody thumb.

“Daniel is winning many tournaments, many matches in a row and you can see how strong he is on the court,” said Davydovich Fokina.

“It was a very unpleasant match with the wind,” he said. “We both had break chances, he took his and I didn’t, but the level is there.”

– Sabalenka on the song –

Sabalenka, ranked second in the world, defeated Gauff 6–4, 6–0, turning the tables on a player who had won three of their four prior encounters.

Sabalenka was in complete control of her serve, and Gauff had few options due to her ferocious ground strokes.

The Belarusian fired five aces and a of 18 winners, ending the match with three straight unreturnable serves without facing a break point.

She said she is a different player than she lost to Gauff in Toronto last year – and since she won her second title of the year at the Australian Open.

“I feel like I’m more calm on the court, and I’m able to control my emotions, which helps me stay in the game and fight for every point,” Sabalenka said.

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Sabalenka will face a battle-tested opponent in Sakkari, who has taken all four matches this week to three sets.

Tiafoe, who reached his first Masters 1000cm without dropping a set, made it clear he is looking beyond the last four.

“It’s great, but it’s the semi-finals,” Tiafoe said. “The work is not done.”

Tiafoe broke Nouri’s serve twice in the second set to level the match at 5-2.

He himself was broken, but made no mistake in the next chance as he ended it with a game of love.

“In the end, it got a bit tricky, but it was one- traffic and I’m really happy with where my game is,” he said.