Indian Wells Day 6 Preview
Published March 10, 2013 11:50
INDIAN WELLS, CA, USA - The third round at the BNP Paribas Open draws to a close on Monday. Among those bidding to reach the last 16 are Angelique Kerber, Caroline Wozniacki and Ana Ivanovic, who face Yanina Wickmayer, Elena Vesnina and Mona Barthel, respectively.
Monday, Third Round
 Angelique Kerber (GER #6) vs.  Yanina Wickmayer (BEL #32)
Head-to-head: series tied 1-1
Angelique Kerber was one of 2012's breakthrough performers, winning 60 matches and two titles on her way to a ensconcing her place within the Top 10. However, this season, the German has struggled to replicate these successes, struggling to an 8-5 record and suffering opening round defeats at her last two tournaments.
After stopping the rot with a victory over Irina-Camelia Begu on Saturday, Kerber now meets the enigmatic Yanina Wickmayer. The players have split their two previous meetings, both of which went the distance, and, the Belgian, who possesses three Top 10 wins, has the big game to trouble Kerber once more.
 Caroline Wozniacki (DEN #10) vs.  Elena Vesnina (RUS #30)
Head-to-head: Wozniacki leads 5-1
While her ranking has slipped since her title triumph here two years ago, Caroline Wozniacki remains as tough a competitor as ever. A trait that was on full display in the second round as she came from a break down in the final set to defeat Alizé Cornet.
The Dane will need to be similarly determined to see off her next opponent, Elena Vesnina. An accomplished doubles player, Vesnina has the variety in her game to upset Wozniacki's rhythm and the confidence - victory over Kimiko Date-Krumm on Saturday was her 14th of the season - to believe an upset is possible. The Russian, though, has lost her last nine matches with members of the Top 10 - and her last four with Wozniacki - statistics that underline the task ahead of her if she wants to make a fourth round debut at the 'fifth Slam'.
 Ana Ivanovic (SRB #13) vs.  Mona Barthel (GER #28)
Head-to-head: Barthel leads 1-0
Worryingly for Mona Barthel, Ana Ivanovic has a habit of saving her best tennis for the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. In 30 matches at the venue, the Serb has lost just six times, reaching the quarterfinals or better on five occasions, and picking up the trophy during her annus mirabilis of 2008.
Just how much it worries Barthel, though, is open to date. The German, who defeated Ivanovic last year in Stuttgart, has all the tools to make it to the top, as illustrated during her recent run to the title in Paris. Both players have superb forehands and their execution could prove pivotal in determining the outcome on Monday afternoon.