Novak Djokovic made his way to his third consecutive Masters title in Indian Wells to avoid Sunday a surprise to American Bjorn Fratangelo, who ended up defeating 2-6, 6-1, 6-2.
“All credit to Bjorn for giving a great game, but I did not feel entirely comfortable on the court,” said the top seed after 12 extend his winning streak in the tournament. “I tried to find a way, to keep and to advance”.
Fratangelo, 22, was junior champion at Roland Garros in 2011 and turned professional a year later, but has played almost exclusively on alternative tours. It is located on the 149th place in the world, and his triumph on Friday was the first in four matches in the ATP tour.
It took 4-0 lead in the first set and kept the game tight until Novak Djokovic won consecutive breaks to keep the last five games.
“Deserved all the points won,” said the Serb. “He took a great match, especially in the first set.”
Novak Djokovic , who has a 17-1 road record this season, took the field after the top seed, Serena Williams , sealed their place in the fourth round with a 7-6 (2), 6-0 Kazakhstan ‘s Yulia Putintseva.
In the first set, Serena Williams showed the effects of a six – week break since losing the final of the Australia Open. American, two – time winner of this tournament, committed 29 unforced errors and looked off the pace to Puntintseva, who played aggressive and challenged almost all decisions of the judges tight lines.
“I tried to get into a rhythm, I did my best not to have a bad start,” said Williams. “And then I broke a service at the start and could not recover. I fought and I tried my best.”
Serena Williams had to break Putintseva’s serve to force sudden death and it was then that began to be imposed on the 56th in the world, to win the last five points.
The second set ended in 24 minutes, in which Williams committed only four unforced errors and won 24 of 30 points. Now the Ukrainian Kateryna Bondarenko will face in the fourth round.
He joined Williams in the fourth round to the Polish Agnieszka Radwanska (3rd), who won 6-2, 6-1 to Romanian Monica Niculescu; Czech Petra Kvitova (the 8th), beat Sweden’s Johanna Larsson 6-3, 4-6, 7-5, and Jelena Jankovic (19th) beat American Coco Vandeweghe 6-0 6-1.
In the men’s branch, the Japanese Kei Nishikori (5th) began the tournament with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Mikhail Kukushkin of Kazakhstan; Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (7th) beat his countryman Vincent van Gogh Millot; and American Sam Querrey (31st) beat Dutchman Thiemo De Bakker 7-6 (5), 6-4.