Emma Raducanu’s run at Indian Wells is over after world No 1 Iga Swiatek continued her title defence with a 6-3 6-1 victory on Tuesday to set up a quarter-final against unseeded Romanian Sorana Cirstea.
Swiatek came under pressure early in the opening set but some clean ballstriking helped her hold for a 3-2 lead after two tight service games. She raised her level further to break Raducanu in the next game before pulling away.
Having wrapped up the first set when Raducanu sent a shot long from the baseline, Swiatek grabbed an early break in the second to heap the pressure on the Briton, whose unforced errors began to mount.
Swiatek, bidding to become only the second female player to successfully defend the Indian Wells title after Martina Navratilova in 1990-91, raced to a 5-1 lead playing flawless tennis and running her opponent ragged.
The US Open champion closed out the win when Raducanu struck the net on serve in a tame end to her fine run in the Southern California desert.
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“I think overall I can say it was a positive week for me,” said Raducanu. “The team, I think we had a run of three really good matches.
“It was a good experience today playing Iga on that court at night. I think the conditions are very slow and heavy and favoured her. But, yeah, it’s just good to see where I’m at.
“I think it’s been a good 10 days. I haven’t trained particularly much before the tournament, but I feel like I’ll probably take a day to recover tomorrow physically, because since the tournament started, I have done a little bit of something every day.
“So (I will) reset a bit mentally and physically tomorrow, and then take it from there.”
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Earlier in the day, Coco Gauff rallied from a break down in the final set to beat Swede Rebecca Peterson 6-3 1-6 6-4 and reach the quarters for the first time.
After taking the first set, the sixth-seeded American began to struggle with her forehand in the second and an opportunistic Peterson applied the pressure by coming into the net.
But after suffering an early break in the decider, Gauff stepped up her defense, fending off three break points at 4-4 and breaking Peterson for a fourth time on match point to book her spot in the last eight.
Gauff, who turned 19 on Monday, was later serenaded with a rendition of ‘Happy Birthday’ by the crowd.
“Today, it was just a mental thing, staying in the match,” Gauff said.
“I wasn’t playing my best in some moments and wasn’t serving as well as I’d like to, but I think my mentality kept me in today.”
Meanwhile, Cameron Norrie is through to the quarter-finals after the No 10 seed notched a 6-2 6-4 win over Andrey Rublev.
Cameron Norrie beats Andrey Rublev with a 6-2, 6-4 straight-sets victory to secure an Indian Wells quarter-final place
Draper retires hurt against Alcaraz
Jack Draper was forced to retire in the second set of his fourth-round clash with Carlos Alcaraz at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells.
The 21-year-old Brit was ultimately overcome by an abdominal injury he picked up during his previous match against Andy Murray.
Carlos Alcaraz advanced to the quarter-finals at the Indian Wells ATP Masters with a 6-2, 2-0 win after Jack Draper retired with injury after 46 minutes of play
He went shot-for-shot with the Spanish world No 2 in the early stages, but noticeably lagged as the first set went on.
Draper’s serve and movement suffered as Alcaraz ran away with the opener 6-2.
Some treatment from the physio in-between sets did little to improve his condition, and the world number 43 was only able to last two games in the second set before retiring.
The result means Alcaraz moves within three wins of regaining the world No 1 ranking.