Djokovic vs Kyrgios Rematch Is On In Indian Wells

So far in Indian Wells, things have gone as expected in the ‘quarter of death’ with Djokovic, Federer, Nadal, and Kyrgios all making the fourth round. Murray who had the easiest draw of them all, however, lost his first match against Pospisil.

Yesterday there were two big matches in the stacked quarter between Kyrgios vs Zverev and Djokovic vs Del Potro which Kyrgios won 6-3, 6-4 while Djokovic won 7-5, 4-6, 6-1.

They both played incredibly well and the result of the rematch is impossible to predict. Djokovic played better than he did in Acapulco but so did Kyrgios. Kyrgios was basically toying with Zverev putting his unlimited talent on full display and getting the double break to win the opening set.

One shot he hit through his legs surprised Zverev to such an extent that Zverev missed a sitter volley into the open court. That point pretty much summed up the match. Kyrgios was making Zverev look like an amateur.

The guy truly has unlimited talent. The only thing standing between him and multiple slams is his mind. I have gained some respect for him since his last meeting with Djokovic after he called Djokovic ‘the most complete player I have ever played‘.

After he defeated Djokovic in Acapulco I wasn’t happy at all with his disrespectful attitude but his comment made up for that to some extent. He may be showing some signs of maturing which would also explain why his tennis is doing better.

He lost to Querrey in Acapulco but this week he started out in devastating form again. As for Djokovic, he is not exactly playing poorly himself. I just caught the rerun of the deciding set and that was the same level as 2015-2016.

Since London last year Djokovic has been close to his best and a lot has been made of the losses since then because of the high standards Djokovic set in the 2015-2016 period. But in truth, he’s been close to his best in that period.

He just got a couple of tough draws and played against players who were playing out of their minds. The margins are also very small at this level. It’s just a question of time before he strings a few wins together and gets back into the winning habit. And that could happen in Indian Wells.

But even if he loses to Kyrgios again he already made more progress this week. I think Del Potro played better than he did in Acapulco because of the way he served. He missed very few first serves in the opening set but Djokovic managed to come from a break down and win it.

He looked very hungry and played as aggressively as he could. Not only was he aggressive from the baseline but he often approached the net and I am sure the doubles win with Troicki over the number one seeds Mahut and Herbert helped him in his match against Del Potro.

The deciding set was special and told me that Djokovic is still very close to his best. The main thing is that his drive and hunger is back in which case it is just a question of time for the results to follow.

It may not happen against Kyrgios because I think Kyrgios has stepped up his game from Acapulco as well but even if Djokovic loses he is still on the right track. That said, Djokovic will be as motivated as he can be to turn around the result from Acapulco.

He certainly does not want to lose consecutive matches to Kyrgios. And if he wins he will face one of his favorite opponents in Federer or Nadal. I think if he beats Kyrgios he becomes the favorite for the tournament so it would be a big win for him.

  • Federer and Nadal Rematch Also On

We are in for a treat today as the Federer vs Nadal rematch after the Australian Open is happening as well. I think some Fedfans are trying to marginalize this rematch saying that the Australian Open is all that mattered.

I’m not sure I agree with that because that match hardly proved anything as far as the rivalry goes. Nadal still leads the rivalry 23-12 overall, 9-3 at slams, and 3-1 in Melbourne. Federer has never beaten Nadal three consecutive times and if he wins today there will be more reason to believe that he is making progress in the rivalry.

Or else it will just be the resumption of the head-to-head dominance from Nadal. Neither player has been particularly impressive since Melbourne either so there is quite a bit on the line here.

Who will win Djokovic vs Kyrgios?

  • Kyrgios (65%, 45 Votes)
  • Djokovic (35%, 24 Votes)

Total Voters: 69

Loading ... Loading ...

Who will win Federer vs Nadal?

  • Federer (75%, 55 Votes)
  • Nadal (25%, 18 Votes)

Total Voters: 73

Loading ... Loading ...
  • Highlights

Posted in Indian Wells, Masters 1000.

7 Comments

  1. Ruan,

    Its a great summary. Thanks for being unbiased. I was not so optimistic about djoker winning this match. I am still not able to understand how messed up the scheduling is. Is this my unclear tennis knowledge or some bias going on here. How come Fed vs nadal or even Wawrinka vs Nishikori play after djokovic vs Krygios when he played the late last night.

    [Reply]

    Siddharth Reply:

    I think it was because Novak had a doubles match scheduled later in the day.

    [Reply]

  2. Watch the whole match now. Djokovic must stop acting like I would expect Kyrgios would do. He shows he is hungry, but I think it gives other players motivation/reason that Djokovic is fragile. Do you agree?

    [Reply]

    Ivan Reply:

    I disagree. Novak was frustrated because he played a typical serve-bot that couldn’t miss the first serve during 90% of the whole match and when he did, he was sending 120+ MPH SECOND serves down the T line regularly. There is no returning such serves, even by greatest returner of all time. It is impossible.

    For the most part Djokovic played close to his level he had in Del Potro match. The only 2 slips were on the very start of the match when he started nervously and dropped his serve and in 2nd set TB when he lost his patience (understandably since serve-bot from Oz couldn’t miss his serves even in TB).

    The problem for Kyrgios is that when it comes to GS matches, he would need to serve like this pretty much the whole match if he thinks he has a chance to beat Novak in best of 5. There comes the problem of keeping such a high level of serves, one slip and he is gone. Whenever point was developed (after his 2nd serve was returned), Kyrgios lost the VAST majority of those points to Novak. Serve-botting only works well if your serves are working brilliantly. When you have no baseline game, or at least not on a level of Djokovic or Murray (and Federer), you are basically SOL once your serve drops.

    Novak is doing fine IMO, he should not get distracted by these 2 losses and should train hard for Miami. He should try to get as deep as he can and if he wins it, he is set to ride the confidence wave into the clay season.

    [Reply]

    Siddharth Reply:

    Agreed. The clay season is where Djokovic’s resurgence will be clearly visible. His level hasn’t dropped off as much rather it’s the playing field that has caught up. Clay is more suitable for a game which relies heavily on defense and conducive to plays involving turning defense into offense.

    Over best-of-five, serving lights-out isn’t possible. That’s where the big 4 (or 3 or 5 whatever way it is looked at) are so good. Patience is their main virtue and more often than not it helps them get over the line. It should be noted however, that Kyrgios is still 21 and improving. He isn’t as one-dimensional as Raonic who isn’t as agile or tactically sound.

    [Reply]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *