Saturday is the day for the semi-finals of the season’s first Masters 1000 which is held in the Indian Wells. Tournament has had big expectations and we can surely say that so far it hasn’t disappointed as we’ve have been able to see some great, interesting matches. There were expected wins from the great ones but also some big surprises have occurred too.
For sure the biggest surprise so far was Andy Murray’s early exit when he was dumped by the Argentinean Federico Delbonis in three sets and another one was Stan Wawrinka’s Round-16 exit against David Goffin. However, Novak Djokovic, Rafa Nadal, Milos Raonic and David Goffin are through to the semi-finals and here is the preview of Saturday’s two matches.
Before the tournament started many were probably expecting to see semi-final duel between the Scot Murray and the Swiss Wawrinka in the bottom half of the draw, but they will have to wait for another tournament to see that happening as this side semi-final will feature two youngsters and promising players, Milos Raonic and David Goffin. Before he got struck by an injury which kept him for over a month sidelined the Canadian was making great results as he was the champion at the Brisbane International Open and the Australian Open semi-finalist. There were some doubts whether he would have been able to find his rhythm and perform at high level after taking that previously mentioned break, but Raonic experienced no problems and was dominant throughout the whole tournament as he is yet to drop a set.
His rival Goffin had an unconvincing start of the tournament but the more he progressed the more he started performing better and better. The match won over Wawrinka wasn’t the only big win for him so far as he had to beat Croat Marin Cilic to make it where he is now. Even though the Belgian has shown that he is more than capable of competing against big players and winning it in the end, the Canadian should be too much for him and its hard to see Goffin taking this one against this dominant and powerful Raonic.
Second semi-final will feature two big tennis names and big rivals, Novak Djokovic and Rafa Nadal as for many fans, tennis lovers, this is the match they want to see on a regular basis. Djokovic had a scary moment in his second-round match against the Qualifier Bjorn Fratangelo when he had to overcome one set to zero deficit to win the match, which he had successfully done.
After that all of his next three matches were straight sets and that can’t be a bad sign for sure. On the other side, Nadal still is not the same Rafa on which we are used to but as long as he is winning there still room for optimism. His road wasn’t an easy one as he was heavily tested by Gilles Muller and Alexander Zverev, but he was then able to gain two sets victory against the man who beat him at this years Australian Open, Fernando Verdasco and top-10 player Kei Nishikori. In the past those two have had some memorable matches which made tennis history and their matches always draw big attention and bring big excitement no matter which tournament it is or in which form they are coming into that clash.
This one shouldn’t be an exception and could be duel of big significance, especially for the Spaniard who is desperate to finally break the ice and lift the trophy one big tournament. Rafa has shown some positive signs so far in the Desert, progress has been made but still tough to see him in the end as the eventual winner against the world’s no:1. The Serb is favourite to make it to the finals, but still keep in mind that Nadal is a 14-time Grand Slam champion and if opportunity comes he will try to make the most out of it.