Raonic ends lucky loser's run at Indian Wells


Resurgent Swiss Belinda Bencic swept to a 12th straight match win on Thursday, booking an Indian Wells WTA semi-final berth with a 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 victory over fifth-ranked Karolina Pliskova.

"This moment has become a reality so it's really, really insane", Andreescu told the crowd after her victory.

The 22-year-old Swiss, who knocked out world number one and defending champion Naomi Osaka on Tuesday, won 6-3 4-6 6-3 for her sixth victory this year over opponents in the world top-10.

With only 24 hours to prepare for a semifinal match against No. 23 Belinda Bencic, a feel-good favorite who's riding a 13-match win streak and a confidence high, Kerber must reset quickly to prepare to face a player with a much different style from Williams.

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Kerber dominated the tiebreaker to grab a hard-fought first set that featured four breaks of serve. She's feeling confident, even telling Tennis Channel's Leif Shiras "soon I will take over your job" after he gave her a special pin for being the first player to come to the studio three times this week. In the third, she overcame a break point to hold at two-all but only won one more game the rest of the way.

Thiem is through to the semi-finals at Indian Wells for the first time, having reached the quarters once before in 2017.

"This is definitely the fittest I've ever felt". Whatever Svitolina threw at her in an attempt to disrupt her game, Andreescu answered.

And Kerber forced the Canadian to continue to work hard in the fourth game, registering a break on some Andreescu unforced errors for the 3-1 advantage.

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"I was struggling, I think, a little bit with myself since the beginning of the match", Pliskova said. She was a royal flush dealt on the first hand, a Volkswagen bug winning the Indy 500.

Pliskova raced to 4-1 lead before wrapping up the second set.

What is perhaps most impressive about Andreescu's game - in addition to her maturity, her ability to settle herself after a disappointing string of points and calm her nerves midmatch - is how fully developed it is from all angles. Only two previous wild cards - Serena Williams and Martina Hingis - played their way to a semifinal at Indian Wells.

Heading into the year, the Canadian teenager was ranked 152 in the world but after booking her place in the final in California, Andreescu is on her way up. After I spoke to my coach I just let it all out there. "I just want to enjoy this moment, because I don't want to take anything for granted". "And now to be able to have my name in front of so many unbelievable champions is, it means the world to me", said Andreescu.

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