The best of the past week on We Are Tennis by BNP Paribas : every Tuesday, we summarize the tennis news of the past week, and mix them with news of the real world. A week marked by the BNP Paribas Indian Wells Open, but also lost dogs and a competition involving camembert cheese.
Monday, March 12th
A nice gaffe to start off the week well : as he was visiting Canada, King Philippe of Belgium was welcomed…by a german flag ! Sloane Stephens, on her side, fixed her mistakes : after three winless confrontations against Victoria Azarenka, the American defeated her nemesis in the second round at Indian Wells (6-1, 7-5). Just like Amanda Anisimova, sixteen years old, who defeated Petra Kvitova (6-2, 6-4) in the first round. It’s her first win against a Top 10 player. On the other hand, there were no surprises for Filip Krajinovic, who was destroyed by Roger Federer (6-2, 6-1). We can’t wait for Sunday to come.
Tuesday, March 13th
It’s official : “Achilles the cat” will be the “Paul the Octopus” of the 2018 football World Cup, and will have the task of predicting the results of the competition. One thing that he didn’t foresee is Serena Williams’ defeat at the BNP Paribas Indian Wells Open against her sister Venus (6-3, 6-4), in what was her first official tournament since January 2017. On a sadder note, the ex-US Open winner (1985, 1993) and Wimbledon winner (1987, 1988), in the doubles, Ken Flach, has died from complications of pneumonia. At only 54 years old…RIP !
Wednesday, March 14th
According to a recent study, babies who look like their father are healthier than the ones who don’t. We’re not sure that Dominic Thiem is often mistaken for his father as the Austrian had to withdraw from Indian Wells - and remain on the sidelines for a few weeks - after injuring his ankle. Hyeon Chung, on his side, has a very big problem with match points. The South-Korean needed ten of them to finally get rid of Pablo Cuevas (6-1, 6-3) ! His wrist must have been shaking much more than what the final score says of the match.
Thursday, March 15th
In the men’s category, the nominees for the title at Indian Wells are…Federer, for mastering the French (7-5, 6-4 against Jérémy Chardy) ; Juan Martin Del Potro for his composure (3-6, 6-3, 6-2 against Philipp Kohlschreiber) ; Milos Raonic for his determination (7-5, 2-6, 6-3 against Sam Querrey) ; and Borna Coric for his first qualification for the semi-finals in a Masters 1000 (2-6, 6-4, 7-6 against Kevin Anderson). And finally, a special-prize for self-depreciation will be given to this motorist in Besançon, France, who, in the middle of a car chase with the police after running a red light, threw some bank notes out of his window. The votes are open. The jury will decide on Sunday.
Friday, March 16th
After fifteen titles won, eight seasons (in total) spent in the top 20 and a world number 2 spot conquered in 2002, Tommy Haas decided to retire. At 39, the German didn’t want to hurt his body, which has truly suffered in recent timed. His last match ? A defeat against Jann-Lennard Struff (6-3, 7-6) last August. His last win ? Against Federer, a month and a half earlier (2-6, 7-6, 6-4). Maria Sharapova, who won’t be playing at the Miami Open because of an injured arm, likes this. Ambre, the dog who had disappeared in Hérault, France, and who just found its family after three years, also likes this.
Saturday, March 17th
65 minutes. Or the time needed by Del Potro to defeat Raonic and reach the final (6-2, 6-3). 17. Or the number of consecutive wins for Federer in 2018 after defeating Coric in the semi-final (5-7, 6-4, 6-4). 4. Or the number of Top 15 players defeated by Daria Kasatkina after defeating Williams to qualify for the final (4-6, 6-4, 7-5). 3. Or the number of games conceded by Naomi Osaka in her semi final against the world number one, Simona Halep (6-3, 6-0). Quebec. The place where the best camembert in the world is made according to a famous international cheese contest. Guinness. The most popular beverage in the world on Saint-Patrick’s day. One. The number of days remaining until the end of the week.
Sunday, March 18th
He lost. And his opponent played better than him. This should resume the huge performance of Del Potro, who won the BNP Paribas Indian Wells Open, despite not having won a single Masters 1000 until now. After missing three match points, Federer lost for the first time this year (6-4, 6-7, 7-6) after an epic duel. In the women’s draw, Osaka lifted the trophy in front Kasatkina (6-3, 6-2). Still in the US, the dog of a certain Kara Swindle found itself on a plane to Japan, and very far from its owners. Will it be back in time for the Miami Open ?