Sela sails into 3rd round at Indian Wells

Sela will next face the winner of Sunday night’s encounter between Argentinian- Jew Diego Schwartzman and Cyprus’s Marcos Baghdatis.

March 12, 2018 03:54
2 minute read.
Sela sails into 3rd round at Indian Wells

Dudi Sela. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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Dudi Sela continued his unlikely run at Indian Wells with an upset of world No. 24 Kyle Edmund on Sunday, defeating the Brit 6-4, 6-4 in an hourand- a-half to advance to the third round of the year’s first Masters event.

The 32-year-old Israeli, ranked No. 97, received a wild card into the main draw as a lucky loser after being beaten last week by world No. 200 Evan King in the second and final round of the qualifiers.

He capitalized by defeating Peter Gojowczyk (50) of Germany in straight sets on Friday and reached the third round in Indian Wells for the first time since 2010 with the victory over Edmund, who recently replaced Andy Murray as Britain’s top ranked player.

Sela, who hasn’t defeated a player ranked as high as Edmund since overcoming John Isner in the second round of Wimbledon last summer, has never reached the fourth round at Indian Wells.

Sela will next face the winner of Sunday night’s encounter between Argentinian- Jew Diego Schwartzman and Cyprus’s Marcos Baghdatis.

Sela’s results in California came on the back of a disappointing start to the year. Israel’s No. 1 lost in the first round in his first three tournaments, including at the Australian Open, and arrived at Indian Wells with just a single win in four ATP Tour events.

Williams sisters to face each other

Serena Williams continued her tennis comeback with a 7-6(5), 7-5 win over Kiki Bertens in the women’s event late Saturday, setting up a third-round encounter with her sister Venus.

Serena, who is returning to the sport after taking more than a year away to have a baby, was ragged at times but used her power to wear down the Dutch 29th seed.

“I’m getting there. I have such a long way to go,” the 23-time Grand Slam champion told reporters.

“It definitely felt better than the first round, but I’m still a little rusty.

“I’m still making errors that I don’t normally make. I call this a trial run, of traveling with the baby and all of this is just so new to me.”

Venus moved into the third round by beating Romanian Sorana Cirstea 6-3, 6-4 in the preceding match.

Monday’s meeting will be the earliest between the Williams sisters since their first professional match in the second round of the 1998 Australian Open.

It will be the 29th between the pair, with Serena leading the head-to-head record 17-11.

That record includes a walkover victory for Serena at Indian Wells in 2001, when Venus pulled out minutes before their scheduled semi-final citing a knee injury.

Spectators vented their displeasure with the withdrawal during the final, booing Serena and jeering her sister and father Richard Williams when the pair arrived to watch the match. Richard Williams alleged he had heard racist taunts.

Serena boycotted the event until 2015.

“Obviously I wish it was anybody else in the draw, literally anybody, but that’s okay,” she said.

“I really abhor every time we play, but I do enjoy the battle when I’m out there. It’s just afterwards I don’t like it as much.”

Reuters contributed to this report.

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