Djokovic Fells the Big Croat at Paribas…

13 Mar

He and Nadal cruise into quarter-finals — pairing always nice to see:

By REUTERSMARCH 13, 2014, 4:29 A.M. E.D.T.

Novak+Djokovic+-+Getty

 

(Reuters) – Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic cruised into the quarter-finals of the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells on Wednesday after Wimbledon champion Andy Murray and Australian Open winner Stanislas Wawrinka both fell in the fourth round.

In a tournament full of surprises, Federer and Djokovic struck a blow for the old world order with Federer beating Germany’s Tommy Haas 6-4 6-4 and Djokovic coming back to down Croatia’s Marin Cilic 1-6 6-2 6-3.

Federer and Djokovic are the only players ranked in the world’s top 10 to reach the quarter-finals after Wawrinka and Murray joined the big-name casualties when they both crashed to lower-ranked opponents on another day of upsets in the Californian desert.

Wawrinka suffered his first loss this year when his 13-match winning streak came to a shuddering halt as he was beaten 7-6(1) 4-6 6-1 by South African Kevin Anderson.

“It wasn’t really on my mind that he had won Australia,” said Anderson, whose next opponent is Federer.

“It feels great to beat somebody who obviously has just won a grand slam.”

Murray was blown away by Canada’s Milos Raonic, one of the biggest servers in men’s tennis.

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MEANS A LOT

Djokovic had won each of his previous seven encounters with Cilic but his perfect record was in danger after he lost the opening set to the towering Croatian, winning just three points on return.

But the Serbian quickly got his act together, and broke Cilic twice in the second set then once in the deciding third to safely advance to the last eight.”

[Listen to my man Nole, the soldier at his best: polite, respectful, ready-to-come-from-behind fighting spirit:]

“I was composed and mentally calm, regardless of the score line,” Djokovic said. “I just accepted the fact that he came out of the blocks better than I did.

“He was very aggressive, not missing at all, serving incredibly fast and accurate. I couldn’t do much really. I was forced to back up.

“I believed that I could come back. The second set was a whole new story. I reset myself and told myself it was the start of the match.

“I forgot about the first set and the second and third went really well. It was the intensity I want to have and I hope to keep it up.”

see whole piece: Federer, Djokovic Advance as Murray, Wawrinka Fall”   

Comment: nikobakos@gmail.com

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