Good news for Andy Murray as Kyrgios beats Djokovic
- Author: Julie Sanders Mar 16, 2017,
Mar 16, 2017, 13:25
To do so he will have to get through another high-profile match-up, against the victor of Rafael Nadal's clash with Australian Open champion Roger Federer.
Both won in style on Sunday, with Spanish fifth seed Nadal pouncing on Guido Pella's serve to break the Argentine five times en route to a 6-3 6-2 victory in sizzling afternoon heat on the stadium hard court.
It was the second successive win for Krygios over the Serb, following victory in their first-ever meeting in Acapulco a fortnight ago and he earned it thanks to some monster serving.
Seeking a fourth consecutive Indian Wells title, second seed Djokovic was sent packing by Nick Kyrgios 6-4 7-6 (7-3) in the last 16 as he lost at the tournament for the first time since 2013.
Despite Wednesday's disappointing loss, Djokovic was proud of his awesome run in California. "I'm just hoping I can carry this confidence, especially on the return, to tomorrow's match because I'm going to need that".
For a place in his 10th semifinal at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden, the 18-time Grand Slam champion will have to get past giant-killer Nick Kyrgios, who snapped three-time defending champion Novak Djokovic's 19-match winning streak in the Californian desert.
The unique situation is the result of last year's drop in form - and ranking - for Federer and Nadal, who signalled their resurgence with an epic Australian Open final duel in which the Swiss emerged victorious.
Their meeting on Thursday (AEDT) will be the earliest they have played since their first match in 2004 at Miami, where Nadal won. "There is a bit of the unknown, which is exciting maybe for the fans to see how we're going to try to figure that part out". He won five of the next six points and closed out the set on Johnson's desperate backhand lob that landed wide.
Djokovic was seeking his sixth title at Indian Wells, but Kyrgios derailed his chances by unleashing 14 aces while never facing a break point. A lot of motivation to play against, I think, number one already. "I was trying to mix it up a bit".
He finished the set with his serve, which was foreshadowing news for Nadal.
In a match where conditions were supposed to favour Nadal's wicked top spin forehand, Federer hit his opponent off the court. "He didn't make too many double faults". Almost two decades later, he still leads their rivalry, 23-12. Nadal's power and endurance would often get the better of Federer, who at one stage began to question his mental state while going up against the Spaniard.