NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News  » Sports » Indian Wells: Federer, Djokovic steamroll into fourth round

Indian Wells: Federer, Djokovic steamroll into fourth round

March 16, 2011 14:43 IST

World number two Roger Federer and Australian Open champion Novak Djokovic each stormed into the fourth round of the Indian Wells ATP tournament with lopsided victories on Tuesday.

Ice-cool Federer, in pursuit of a record fourth title here, swept past Argentine Juan Ignacio Chela 6-0, 6-2 while Serb Djokovic extended his perfect record this season to 14-0 by pulverising Ernests Gulbis 6-0, 6-1.

Chela was broken five times by Federer in dazzling sunshine at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden, where temperatures peaked at 90 Fahrenheit (32.22 Celsius), as the Swiss master eased to a commanding victory in 58 minutes.

"I'm happy it went so well today," the 16-times Grand Slam champion told reporters after ending the match with a rasping backhand winner down the line.

Roger Federer"The opening first couple of games were kind of tough. I was able to move him around, I thought. Then I was able to mix it up, and I think I took his options as way a bit.

"And then his serve kind of went away and I was able to find a way to out-manoeuvre him. At the end, it was a great match -- for me, anyway," Federer, 29, added with a smile.

The Swiss, who claimed a hat-trick of titles at Indian Wells from 2004, will next meet American wildcard Ryan Harrison, the 18-year-old having clawed his way past Canadian prospect Milos Raonic 7-6, 4-6, 6-4.

Djokovic, seemingly in a rush to reach his third consecutive final this year, broke an error-prone Gulbis three times in the opening set and twice in the second to steamroll to victory in just under an hour.

The stands surrounding the showpiece stadium court for the first match of the day were barely a quarter full when the third-seeded Serb ending a one-sided contest with successive aces.


"I cannot ask for a better start to the year," world number three Djokovic said after beating the Latvian for a fourth time in five meetings. "The last three months have been unbelievable.

"I'm just building up on that confidence and continuing to play well. I have been playing great tennis, the best tennis of my life."

Djokovic, who claimed his second Grand Slam crown at the Australian Open in January and his 20th ATP World Tour title at last month's Dubai championships, was in imperious form against Gulbis.

Hitting his groundstrokes crisply from behind the baseline, he swept through the first set in only 26 minutes and then broke his 31st-seeded opponent for a fourth time early in the second to tighten his grip.

When Gulbis held serve for the only time in the match to trail 1-3 after a Djokovic forehand sailed wide, the crowd erupted with cheers and whistles in a bid to give the hapless Latvian a lift.

However Djokovic, champion here as a 20-year-old in 2008, again broke Gulbis in the seventh game before serving out to seal the win.

Djokovic will next meet 16th-seeded fellow Serb Viktor Troicki, who eased past 24th-seeded Frenchman Michael Llodra 6-3, 6-3.

In other matches, seventh-seeded Czech Tomas Berdych crushed Thomaz Bellucci of Brazil 6-3, 6-2 and 18th seed Richard Gasquet of France upset 10th-seeded Austrian Juergen Melzer 6-1, 6-3.

Eighth seed Andy Roddick, runner-up here last year, overpowered fellow American John Isner 7-5, 6-2 in an evening match-up between two big servers.
© Copyright 2019 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.