Cristian makes Casper disappear

HARRY HOW/agence france-presse CRISTIAN Garin has pulled off a shocker when he beat third seed Casper Ruud, 6-4, 7-6 (7/2), in the third round of the Indian Wells.  

INDIAN WELLS (AFP) — Qualifier Cristian Garin shocked third-seeded Casper Ruud 6-4, 7-6 (7/2) to reach the fourth round at Indian Wells as Daniil Medvedev and Cameron Norrie survived scares.
Garin’s attacking game paid off as the 97th-ranked Chilean dispatched world No. 4 Ruud in just under two hours.

“The way I played today I’m so happy,” the 26-year-old Garin said.

“I was aggressive the whole match.”

His 39 winners were too much for Ruud, a two-time Grand Slam finalist last year who had hoped a quick victory over Diego Schwartzman in his second-round opener would mark a turnaround in a season where he hadn’t advanced past the second round in three prior tournaments.

Meanwhile, Medvedev, long frustrated by the slow hard courts in the California desert, managed to push his ATP winning streak to 16 matches with a 6-2, 3-6, 6-1 victory over 85th-ranked Ilya Ivashka.

Medvedev, coming off three straight titles at Rotterdam, Doha and Dubai, said the victory was a matter of “a few points,” but they went his way to keep him on track to improve on his previous best Indian Wells showing — the Round of 16 in 2021.

“(It’s) tough to make anything during the rallies, so just have to kind of see who puts more balls in court. If you lose a little momentum you lose a set,” said Medvedev, who was clearly frustrated at the end of the second set.

He grumbled to the referee that he would be “as slow as the court” in taking a bathroom break but pulled himself together to take a 5-0 lead in the third, serving it out after Ivashka saved three match points to hold in the penultimate game.

“I cannot say I played much better in the third, but (I) managed to be the one not missing after 25 shots,” said Medvedev, who next faces former world No. 2 Alexander Zverev.

Zverev, coming back after torn ankle ligaments ended his 2022 campaign at the French Open, said much the same after a 7-5, 1-6, 7-5 victory over Finland’s’ Emil Ruusuvuori.

“To be honest I think he played much better than me throughout the match,” Zverev said.

“It’s just the way it is sometimes, one or two points can decide a match.”

Tenth-seeded Norrie, who reached the final in Buenos Aires and lifted the trophy in Rio de Janeiro last month, was down a set and 4-1 to Japanese qualifier Taro Daniel before rallying for a 6-7 (5/7), 7-5, 6-2 victory.

Another Chilean qualifier joined Garin in the fourth round as Alejandro Tabilo triumphed 6-3, 7-6 (8/6) over unseeded Jordan Thompson, who had upset second-seeded Stefanos Tsitsipas in the second round.

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