Federer breezes into QF

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 16 Mar 2018 11:09:26



INDIAN WELLS (US),

WORLD No 1 Roger Federer’s remarkable run continued as he booked his quarter-final berth in the ATP Indian Wells Masters with a 7-5, 6-4 win over Jeremy Chardy.The 36-year-old Federer, who won his 20th Grand Slam when he captured the Australian Open in January, is off to one of his strongest career starts and is now 15-0 in 2018. It is his best beginning to the season since 2006 when he started 16-0 and won 33 of his first 34 matches.“It has been great. It is a totally different year, and so many years after that,” he said on Thursday.“For so many years I have felt good actually in Australia already.


“I don’t know if it’s Australia per se or, taking the benefits from the hard work I put into the new season.” Federer, who also won at Rotterdam in February, is gunning for a record sixth Indian Wells title. “Yeah, and then also Rotterdam was great. I was very happy that I was able to win the tournament there, not just get to the semis and get world No 1. “And here now I’m relieved that I was able to win three matches already. Because in a big, tough draw like here at Indian Wells, you’re never quite sure what to expect. “So I’m just happy I’m on a good run.”
Halep, Osaka reach semi-finalsWORLD No 1 Simona Halep punched her ticket to the Indian Wells semi-finals with a 6-4, 6-7 (5/7), 6-3 win over Croatia’s Petra Martic.


The 26-year-old Halep improved to 18-1 on the season and is looking to win her second WTA Tour title of 2018. Halep, of Romania, needed two hours and 23 minutes on Thursday to put Martic away under taxing conditions as strong winds swirled around the main stadium court.
“It was difficult conditions to play in today because of the wind,” she said. “It was tough to play, because the ball was really moving. “But I just tried everything. I tried also to push a little bit the ball and then to hit it. I tried to mix it up. Was not easy at all. For both of us it was difficult.” Halep moves on to the semi-finals where she will face Japan’s Naomi Osaka who beat fifth-seeded Karolina Pliskova 6-2, 6-3.Halep is guaranteed to hold onto her No 1 ranking at the end of this event after world number two Caroline Wozniacki was eliminated on Tuesday.


Halep blasted two aces and broke Martic’s serve four times.“I just fought and that’s maybe why I won because I refuse to lose,” Halep said.Halep won the final five games of the third set after being broken once and falling behind 3-1 early.The turning point in the third set came for Halep after she won a challenge in the eighth game with Martic holding serve. On the very next point Martic hit a forehand wide as Halep took the game and a 5-3 set lead.Halep then served for the match, winning five of the final six points after the challenge.Halep said her early struggles in the final set were from nerves and frustration with the playing conditions.“I calmed myself down a little bit more, and I just was more focused on what I have to do, and not thinking that much about the wind and what is going on court.