Archivo de la etiqueta: Indian Wells

En Marcha el Indian Wells 2017

Indian Wells es el punto de reunión para la élite del tenis en los próximos días. Del 6 al 19 de marzo se jugarán más de 100 partidos de alto nivel en las canchas del Indian Wells Tennis Garden en el Sur de California.

La gran ausente para este torneo será Serena Williams, ganadora del más reciente Australian Open y actual número uno del mundo. La ganadora de 23 tornes de Grand Slam anunció que debido a una lesión en su rodilla estará fuera de un torneo que no le pide nada a los cuatro grandes en cuanto a calidad de competidores.

Jugado en canchas duras, es de los últimos ensayos en dicho tipo de superficie antes de preparar el camino para el Roland Garros a jugarse en mayo sobre polvo de ladrillo. El complejo cuenta con la cancha-estadio más grande del mundo a la que le caben más de 16,000 espectadores.

En el cuadro de los hombres incluye los nombres de Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Juan Martin del Potro, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray y el ganador del Abierto Mexicano Telcel, Sam Querrey entre muchos otros.

Nole llega a este torneo habiendo ganado 18 partidos seguidos de Indian Wells y al parecer tiene un camino fácil a las últimas instancias del torneo. Sin embargo, el no estar jugando a su mejor nivel en este 2017 y tomando en cuenta la calidad de jugadores que hay en este el certamen, nada esta escrito.

Para poner en perspectiva el nivel de competencia que hay en Indian Wells, de los mejores 20 del mundo solo estan fuera Milos Raonic de Cánada (#4) y el francés Richard Gasquet (#19). Entre Rafa, Novak y Roger han ganado 12 de los últimos 13  torneos de Indian Wells.

Con la ausencia de Serena en el cuadro femenil, la favorita es Angelique Kerber. La alemana de 29 años de edad llega como número dos del mundo y no estan tres de las mejores 10 en este torneo. Sin embargo, Kerber nunca ha llegado a la final en Indian Wells desde la primera vez que participó en el 2008.

En el cuadro feminil, las cosas han sido mas impredecibles. Del 2007 a la fecha sólamente Victoria Azarenka ha ganado el torneo dos veces (2012, 2016). Serena Williams no lo ha ganado desde el 2001.

El torneo se juega desde 1976 en la rama varonil y fue hasta 1989 que se incluyó a las mujeres en este evento. Indian Wells ofrece una bolsa de 10 millones de dólares para los mejores del torneo de los cuales les tocan un millón al campeón de cada rama.

Así que ya esta en marcha el conocido “BNP Paribas Open”. Un torneo que recibe a los mejores exponentes del deporte blanco y a más de 400,000 aficionados al tenis en las 29 canchas del complejo durante los 13 días de competencia.

 

 

Indian Wells is ON

Most of the best tennis players in the world do like getting some time off but when Indian Wells comes around, there is no other place they rather be. The tournament that celebrates its 40th anniversary, runs from March 9 to the 22 at Indian Wells, California.

It is one of the few non-Grand Slam tournaments where the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) and the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) collide throughout the year. So it is one of those rare chances to see the best of both genders battle it out on the tennis courts. This year, on the men’s side, 18 out of the top 20 players were registered to play. In the women’s side, only three out of the top 20 are not in the mix.

The weather in not expected to disappoint. California, unlike the east side of the country, is warming up quickly around this time of the year. The weather, the atmosphere and the high level of tennis displayed throughout the two weeks of competition surely invites any tennis lover to stay tuned.

SOME HIGHLIGHTS OF LAST YEAR

The tournament, that was originally staged in Arizona, made a brief stop in Florida for a few years before coming back to the west coast. It was until 1987 when both men and women were invited to participate. What you could find fascinating about it, is that the complex in which the tournament was played grew around the idea of adequating a La Quinta Hotel to a place for tennis to host its biggest stars. The organizers at that time already envisioned the success it has today.

In 2000, the Indian Wells Tennis Garden opened its doors. Changes to the venue are constantly made, but the essence of the tournament remain the same. Attendance for the event keeps growing every year. In 2014, 431,527 people witnessed what went on. The main stadium seats around 16,100 fans and it is not unusual to see it sell out. The complex has a total of 20 practice courts and nine stadium courts. It was voted as ATP Masters 1000 Tournament of the Year in 2014.

The tournament is scheduled around the halfway point between the Australian Open and the Roland Garros. The ATP follows it with the Irving Classic and the Miami Open which is also in the schedule of the WTA. Players don’t seem to care about the jet lag that comes with trying to make it to California. They all want to be there as it is a great opportunity for developing talent to show what they are made off.

There are many storylines that will be unfolding at this tournament. One that might catch most people’s attention is Rafael Nadal’s return to action after a long injury break. The Spaniard has shown fans, time and time again he can come back from almost everything. Novak Djokovic is the man to beat as he is the reigning champion. Watch out for Kei Nishikori who is Nick Bollettieri’s favorite student at the time. The Japanese player has won 10 out of his last 11 games since the Aussie Open. Roger Federer reached the final last year but is not expected to do so this year. While Andy Murray is also going through at hot streak, experts don’t see him getting past the quarter-finals and give Novak the win before he even plays a game.

On the women’s side things always tend to be a bit more exciting. Serena Williams should not have too many difficulties reaching the final and most likely to win it. She has not played at this Open since her win in 2001. Victoria Azarenka wants to get back to being the #1 player in the world. How bad does she want it will be judged on how she does in this venue. While injuries seem to be her biggest concern, her fighting spirits is her biggest weapon. Based on how the brackets are set up, she could face Maria Sharapova in the third round. That would be a big test for both of them prior to reaching the final stages of the tournament. I believe Sharapova has a clear advantage by the way she’s been playing lately. Watch out and don’t underestimate Caroline Wozniacki, she has talent and just ran the New York City Marathon. Never underestimate a marathoner. She can have one of those weeks where even Willams would not want to be in front of her. It all depends on how she warms up early in the tournament. The women’s side is always more unpredictable that the men’s side.

Last thing I’ve got to say is that you must keep up with what happens at Indian Wells. I can already tell you will like what you see.