IW Wednesday: Halep Kicks Off QFs
Published March 12, 2014 12:11
INDIAN WELLS, CA, USA - The first two semifinal spots at the BNP Paribas Open will be decided on Wednesday as Simona Halep takes on Casey Dellacqua and Agnieszka Radwanska meets 2010 champion Jelena Jankovic.
 Simona Halep (ROU #7) vs. [Q] Casey Dellacqua (AUS #78)
Head-to-head: first meeting
Casey Dellacqua may have advanced to the quarterfinals courtesy of a walkover, but few can claim she has not earned her place there. Last Monday, Dellacqua began her campaign in the first round of qualifying against Anna Tatishvili, and now - five matches, 13 sets and nearly eight hours later - she is on the verge of her maiden Premier semifinal. This achievement would cap a memorable start to the season that has already seen the Australian reach the fourth round of her home major and return to the Top 100.
Standing in her way, though, is Simona Halep, who is rapidly developing into one of the game's most feared opponents. While Halep may lack the destructive power of some of her fellow Top 10 members, she more than compensates for this with an ability to solve almost any on-court riddle thrown her way. In the fourth round against Eugenie Bouchard this quality was in distinct focus, as she regrouped from a break down to win a breathless third set shootout.
 Agnieszka Radwanska (POL #3) vs.  Jelena Jankovic (SRB #8)
Head-to-head: Radwanska leads 4-1
With all the big-name casualties elsewhere in the draw, Agnieszka Radwanska has been allowed to go about her business in Indian Wells somewhat under the radar. That will all change on Wednesday when she kicks off the evening session on Stadium 1 against one of the game's other standout counterpunchers, Jelena Jankovic.
Radwanska prepared for their encounter by outmaneuvering the WTA's resident marathon woman, Alizé Cornet, while Jankovic shrugged off the virus that had laid her low on Monday to blow away Caroline Wozniacki. This win kept Jankovic in the hunt with Halep for a Top 5 post-tournament ranking, and she will need to be similarly bold in her tactics if she is to end a four-match losing streak against the Pole.
Also on court...
Following her singles match, Dellacqua will have a quick turnaround before being back on court alongside Ashleigh Barty in their doubles quarterfinal against top seeds Hsieh Su-Wei and Peng Shuai. Also looking to advance are No.2 seeds Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina, who take on Cara Black and Sania Mirza.