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Medvedev endures rain delay to reach Indian Wells pre-quarters

 
Indian Wells, Oct 12 (IANS) Top seed Daniil Medvedev of Russia endured a lengthy rain delay to oust Serbian 27th seed Filip Krajinovic 6-2, 7-6(1) and reach the fourth round of the BNP Paribas Open here on Tuesday (IST).

In a showdown that started late due to rain, the Russian managed the cold, windy conditions better at Indian Wells to set up a clash with 23rd seed Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria. It was the world No. 2's 18th win from his past 19 matches on North American soil.

The Russian won 70 per cent of first-serve points and hit 28 winners to just 16 unforced errors for his 50th match win this season. Krajinovic finished the 90-minute contest with 15 winners and 20 unforced errors.

"I feel like I'm trying to play a little bit less... just playing the biggest tournaments, or the ones that will get me back into shape so I'm really happy that I managed to get 50 (wins). It means that I was doing pretty good in a lot of them," said Medvedev.

"Filip is a really tough opponent. He's always playing top tennis, very tough matches, especially that second set. (There were a) lot of ups and downs, but I think a great level from both of us. Really happy that in the tie-break I managed to (gain) the edge on my side," Medvedev told atptour.com.

Krajinovic had always been a tough opponent for Medvedev. Two years ago, as a No. 113-ranked qualifier, he defeated the then-15th seed in straight sets to reach the fourth round at Indian Wells.

This year, in the third round of the Australian Open, Medvedev let a two-set lead slip before he stormed home in the fifth to win his 17th straight match. It was his first five-set victory in seven attempts.

Grigor Dimitrov's strong form continued as he overcame the wind and 6' 11" Reilly Opelka's serve, overcoming the American 6-3, 6-4 to advance to the fourth round in Indian Wells.

Dimitrov stood two or three feet closer to the baseline on return as he countered the height and angle of the Opelka serve, breaking twice to advance after 74 minutes.

--IANS

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