No.27 Paula Badosa put in a dominant performance in windy conditions to defeat No.15 seed Coco Gauff 6-2, 6-2 to advance to her first Round of 16 at the BNP Paribas Open. The Spaniard will face French Open champion Barbora Krejcikova.
"Barbora, we are very good friends," Badosa said. "We practice a lot. We played as well. She's doing an amazing year. Insane. She's a very talented player, so I know it's going to be a very, very tough match."
In an impressive display in cool, swirling conditions that wreaked havoc on servers all day, Badosa saved the only break point she faced all night to go unbroken against the 17-year-old American, while also dominating on her return games. The match opened with four holds of serve until Badosa finally broke through for the first of her four breaks of serve in the match, breaking Gauff at love to lead 3-2.
Badosa broke again for a 5-2 lead before rain forced a stoppage in play. But the lengthy delay did nothing to unmoor the 23-year-old Spaniard, who has enjoyed a breakout season in 2021. When play resumed, she coolly held at 15 to close out the opening set after 27 minutes of play.
"I know she's an amazing player," Badosa said. "She's going to be even better. But I played her doubles, so more or less I know what I could find today. I know she has an amazing serve. I knew I had to be pretty solid on mine as well. An amazing backhand. She's very athletic as well. So I was expecting a tough match."
With the set in hand, Badosa continued to manage the conditions through a clean, clinical performance that ultimately needed just 54 minutes. Gauff struggled to find her rhythm, misfiring on 28 unforced errors compared to Badosa's seven.
Badosa made 71% of her first serves and lost just nine points on her serve all night. She kept her targets big on her return games to pressure Gauff off the baseline and took advantage of Gauff's second serve, winning 12 of her 17 second-serve return points.
"I know the conditions today were tough," Badosa said. "Sometimes when you don't feel you have good feelings from the beginning, sometimes it's tough. I think that's what happened to her. I played quite well. I stayed very focused and solid, and I think that was the key of the match."
Krejcikova rolls into the fourth round with her 44th win of the season
No.3 seed Barbora Krejcikova closed out the night session with a contained and controlled performance, defeating Amanda Anisimova 6-2, 6-3 to advance to the fourth round. Playing the main draw for the first time in her career, the French Open champion looked like a tournament veteran as she faced down the cool conditions and her American opponent.
No Czech woman has won the singles title in Indian Wells, and Krejcikova is looking to change that. This time last year, Krejcikova was ranked No.114 in the world; as it stands now, she sits at No.5 with a chance to finish even higher.
To tally her 44th win of the season, Krejcikova managed her service games well to give Anisimova just one break point chance in the match, while breaking the 20-year-old American five times. She quickly set the tone for the match early, racing out to a 4-0 lead to open the match, as Anisimova struggled to land her shots.
Krejcikova, who has now won 29 of her past 33 matches, never relented. She sealed the opening set after 29 minutes and continued her clinical baseline pressure to win the match after 1 hour and 11 minutes. Krejcikova finished with 11 winners to 15 unforced errors, while Anisimova hit 10 winners to 29 unforced errors.
"It was really tough because it was really windy and we had to wait for a long time. It was cold outside too," Krejcikova said. "I was just trying to play my game and look to not make too many unforced errors."
The victory sets up a second meeting against Badosa. The Spaniard prevailed earlier this season in Madrid, 6-1, 7-5 en route to her breakout semifinal run.
"Paula I would say is one of my favorite players," Krejcikova said. "I like her, so it's going to be a nice match. I'm looking forward to play her again."