Thursday featured plenty of strong performances, surprises and thrills at the 2014 BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, Calif.
First-round women's singles action wrapped up on Thursday while the men's main draw kicked off. Although no seeded players were in action in either singles draw, some familiar faces managed to emerge victorious.
With things heating up at the tennis season's first Masters event, let's get you up to speed on the latest scores and results from Indian Wells.
|Men's Singles||Lleyton Hewitt def. Matthew Ebden||7-6(2), 3-6, 6-3|
|Men's Singles||Juan Monaco def. Peter Polansky||6-4, 6-7(5), 6-4|
|Men's Singles||Lukas Rosol def. Dusan Lajovic||6-7(2), 7-5, 6-4|
|Men's Singles||Radek Stepanek def. Denis Istomin||6-1, 3-6, 6-1|
|Men's Singles||Jiri Vesely def. Igor Sijsling||3-6, 6-4, 7-6(1)|
|Men's Singles||Michael Russell def. Donald Young||4-6, 6-1, 6-2|
|Men's Singles||Edouard Roger-Vasselin def. Benjamin Becker||6-4, 6-2|
|Men's Singles||Tim Smyczek def. Jack Sock||6-4, 1-6, 6-4|
|Women's Singles||Francesca Schiavone def. Mona Barthel||3-6, 6-2, 6-2|
|Women's Singles||Jie Zheng def. Paula Ormaechea||3-6, 6-3, 7-6(5)|
|Women's Singles||Alisa Kleybanova def. Victoria Duval||5-7, 6-4, 6-4|
|Women's Singles||Taylor Townsend def. Karin Knapp||7-6(1), 6-1|
|Women's Singles||Julia Goerges def. Jana Cepelova||6-1, 2-6, 6-3|
|Women's Singles||Aleksandra Wozniak def. Urszula Radwanska||6-2, 6-0|
|Women's Singles||Camila Giorgi def. Andrea Petkovic||6-7(5), 6-3, 6-3|
|Women's Singles||Coco Vandeweghe def. Alexandra Cadantu||6-4, 6--0|
*Complete Thursday results for singles and doubles can be viewed at BNPParibasOpen.com.
Beloved Aussie Lleyton Hewitt was among Thursday's big winners, topping compatriot Matthew Ebden in three sets after surviving an opening set tiebreak.
Thursday was also a solid day for the Americans but a tough one as well as Michael Russell defeated Donald Young and Tim Smyczek knocked off Jack Sock in a pair of all-American clashes.
As The New York Times' Ben Rothenberg points out, the victory couldn't have come at a better time for Smyczek, who has struggled since reaching the third round at the U.S. Open last summer.
Tim Smyczek def WC Jack Sock 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 to make the second round in Indian Wells. Bumpy match, but a much-needed result for Tim. #BNPPO14— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) March 6, 2014
Rhyne Williams was the third American man to fall on Thursday, losing to Frenchman Jeremy Chardy in straight sets. Despite dropping the first set in a gut-wrenching tiebreak, Williams fought hard in the second set, pushing Chardy to the brink before bowing out at 7-5.
There were fewer American women in action on Thursday, but the results were mixed as well. Seventeen-year-old Taylor Townsend advanced to the second round with a straight-sets win over Karin Knapp.
Townsend: 'I tried to focus on myself & be positive. I don't think I played my best but I did a good job of fighting.' #BNPPO14— TennisTV (@TennisTV) March 6, 2014
Meanwhile, 18-year-old U.S. Open superstar Victoria Duval was sent home by Alisa Kleybanova. What's more, Duval led 4-1 in the deciding set before losing the last five games to surrender the match.
Alisa Kleybanova comes back from a break down in the third to beat Vicky Duval 57 64 64. #bnppo14— Beyond The Baseline (@SI_BTBaseline) March 7, 2014
Although the collapse is likely to haunt Duval for some time, there's lots for her to build off moving forward.
The Czech Republic, who are hoping for a big tournament from fourth-seeded Tomas Berdych, had plenty to cheer about in the men's draw on Thursday, as both Lukas Rosol and Radek Stepanek advanced to the second round via three-set wins. Rosol showed tremendous resilience in his come-from-behind victory while Stepanek dropped a combined two games in the two sets he took from Denis Istomin.
Up next, Stepanek will face off against defending champion Rafael Nadal while Rosol will get fifth-seeded Andy Murray. Needless to say, both men will be heavy underdogs in the second round.
In perhaps the most eye-opening result in the women's draw on Thursday, Italy's Francesca Schiavone, who won the French Open in 2010, finally broke through into the win column, picking up her first victory of the year after coming from behind to defeat Mona Barthel.
On her 8th try, Francesca Schiavone finally wins a match in 2014, beating Mona Barthel in three. Compatriot Vinci remains winless...#BNPPO14— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) March 7, 2014
Naturally, the 33-year-old veteran was thrilled, per TennisTV on Twitter:
Although there was more than enough tennis to take in on Thursday, the start of second-round action on Friday means that fans will have an opportunity to see some the favorites in the women's draw begin their journey through the bracket.
Second-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska and third-seeded Victoria Azarenka will headline Friday's schedule and provide tennis fans with a preview of what's to come this weekend when the rest of the sport's stars take to the court for the first time.
*Click here to view updated draws via BNPParibasOpen.com.
*Click here to view the complete schedule for Friday via BNPParibasOpen.com.
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