Indian Wells | Del Potro marches on
Juan Martin Del Potro continued his dominance over David Ferrer to book a spot in the Indian Wells fourth round as second seed Marin Cilic suffered a shock loss.
World No. 8 Del Potro extended his winning streak over the Spaniard to five straight matches, winning 6-4 7-6(3) at the ATP Tour hardcourt Masters 1000 tournament.
It is one of my dreams to win this title. I have been in the final and the semis but I have never held the trophy Juan Martin del Potro
“We always play tough matches. I got lucky,” the 29-year-old said. “I played really well in the tiebreak and served well in the important moments.”
Del Potro will next face fellow Argentinian Leonardo Mayer, who defeated Japanese qualifier Taro Daniel 6-4 6-1.
Del Potro is playing some of his best tennis in years as he improved his season’s record to 13-3 having returned the top 10 last January for the first time since 2014.
He is fresh off winning his 21st career title earlier in Acapulco earlier this month when he bullied his way to three top 10 consecutive victories including a straight sets win over Kevin Anderson in the final.
Del Potro, the 2013 Indian Wells finalist, hammered six aces and won 87 percent of his first-serve points completing the match after 106-minutes and said: “It is one of my dreams to win this title. I have been in the final and the semis but I have never held the trophy,”
Philipp Kohlschreiber secured his place in the fourth round with an impressive 6-4 6-4 win over Australian Open finalist and second seed Marin Cilic.
The German having struggled to get trough his last match, was not expected to make much of an impact on the big serving Croat despite his 6-4 record against him.
Kohlschreiber grabbed the initiative early in the match and successfully fended off all Cilic’s attempts to get back saving breaks in the sixth game.
The second set proved a bit tighter as Cilic held serve to love on three occasions but Kohlschreiber turned the tables in the seventh game and closed out the match to secure a place in the last 16.
The run to the fourth round in Indian Wells matches Kohlschreiber’s career best results in the California tournament having also made that stage in 2009 and 2011. It also marks a more recent return to form for the world No.37. He had gone 0-3 in his first three tournaments of the year, and had failed to win back-to-back matches in 2018 before this week.
“I felt good. I played aggressive. I played well in the crucial moments and on the big points,” Kohlschreiber said. “I think another key factor was that it was a two-set win.”
In other matches Novak Djokovic’s conqueror Taro Daniel was comprehensively beaten by Argentina’s Leonardo Mayer 6-4 6-1. There might also be concerns about Gael Monfils’ participation in the Miami Masters next week. The popular Frenchman was forced to retire from his third- round meeting with compatriot Pierre-Hugues Herbert when trailing 6-2 3-1; Canadian No. 1 Milos Raonic beat Portugal’s Joao Sousa 7-5 4-6 6-2 and Sam Querrey of the United States rallied to outlast Yuki Bhambri 6-7(4) 6-4 6-4.