Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press
The stars were out Thursday for quarterfinal action at the 2018 BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, California.
The women’s draw had the eighth-seeded Venus Williams and 10th-seeded Angelique Kerber looking to move one step closer to a championship, while No. 1 Roger Federer and No. 7 Kevin Anderson attempted to dispatch pesky challengers in an effort to set up a semifinal clash.
Below, we’ll break down the day’s results and provide an overview of the updated schedule.
No. 1 Roger Federer def. No. 23 Hyeon Chung: 7-5, 6-1
Borna Coric def. No. 7 Kevin Anderson: 2-6, 6-4, 7-6 (3)
Federer’s breezy run in California rolled on as he squashed South Korean challenger Hyeong Chung 7-5, 6-1 to keep his perfect start to the season intact.
TennisNow provided some perspective on Federer’s early dominance:
16-0. That matches Roger Federer’s best start to a season ever. And still No.1. Roger Federer defeats Hyeon Chung, 7-5, 6-1, to reach the #BNPPO18 semis. https://t.co/aCsl5j9icC
According to the ATP, the 36-year-old is now guaranteed to be the world No. 1 when the Miami Open begins Tuesday.
But before the festivities in South Florida get underway, Federer will turn his attention to a semifinal meeting with Borna Coric, who battled back from a set down to stun Anderson.
Tennis TV provided a look at match point, which came in a third-set tiebreaker:
Tennis TV @TennisTV
A first ever Masters 1000 semifinal spot! 👏 @borna_coric downs Anderson 2-6 6-4 7-6(3) in a thrilling opening QF #BNPPO18 https://t.co/Vp6T5VTbwv
“I didn’t start very well. He was hitting the ball very big, and I just couldn’t find my rhythm on the ball,” Coric said, per ATPWorldTour.com. “I started going more for the serve. And then I broke him earlier in the second set, which was really helpful. In the third, again, I knew it’s one break, it’s two or three points are going to decide, and that’s what happened.”
Coric has only met Federer once before. That tilt came in 2015 when Federer bested the Croatian youngster 6-2, 6-1 in Dubai.
The 21-year-old is far more polished now, but he will still be a heavy underdog as Federer’s march toward a third 2018 title continues.
No. 8 Venus Williams def. No. 27 Carla Suarez Navarro: 6-3, 6-2
No. 20 Daria Kasatkina def. No. 10 Angelique Kerber: 6-0, 6-2
The WTA is officially on notice: 20-year-old Daria Kasatkina is not to be taken lightly.
Weeks after she made a run to the final at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships with wins over Johanna Konta and Garbine Muguruza, Kasatkina blasted into the semifinals at Indian Wells behind a straight-set thrashing of Kerber.
Kasatkina needed just 58 minutes to wrap up her 6-0, 6-2 win, which fittingly ended on an ace, as the WTA documented on Twitter:
Blink and you missed @DKasatkina booking her ticket to the @BNPPARIBASOPEN semis! Tops Kerber 6-0, 6-2. https://t.co/VRj8LsnYYG
That ace represented Kasatkina’s third of the match, and it capped off a day that saw her win 69 percent of the points on first serve.
Kasatkina was also the beneficiary of Kerber’s 13 unforced errors.
“For sure it’s maybe not the favorite court for me, because it’s really slow,” Kerber said following the loss, according to WTATennis.com. “I make a lot of mistakes, easy ones, and not my day at the end.”
While Kerber is headed home, Kasatkina will head to the semifinals for a showdown with Williams after she topped Carla Suarez Navarro 6-3, 6-2.
.@Venuseswilliams is into the @BNPPARIBASOPEN semifinals for the first time since 2001! She downs Suarez Navarro, 6-3, 6-2! #BNPPO18 https://t.co/IXQlUNEcWC
Williams, who bowed out of the Australian Open in the first round, hasn’t dropped a set in Indian Wells and has looked like a viable champion.
She’ll now prepare for a meeting with Kasatkina, who has given her trouble in the past.
Kasatkina won their first meeting at the start of 2016 in New Zealand, but Williams won months later in a three-set thriller at Wimbledon.
The other women’s semifinal will pit the upstart Naomi Osaka against No. 1 Simona Halep.
Friday’s Schedule (Begins at 3 p.m. ET)
No. 18 Sam Querrey vs. No. 32 Milos Raonic (Quarterfinal)
No. 6 Juan Martin Del Potro vs. No. 31 Philipp Kohlschreiber (Quarterfinal)
No. 8 Venus Williams vs. No. 20 Daria Kasatkina (Semifinal)
No. 1 Simona Halep vs. Naomi Osaka (Semifinal)