Indian Wells Open: Jannik Sinner Makes Semi-Finals, Alcaraz-Zverev Match-up Suspended Due to Bees – News18

Published By: Siddarth Sriram
Last Updated: March 15, 2024, 08:08 IST
United States of America (USA)
Jannik Sinner in action (Credit: AFP)
Australian Open champion Jannik Sinner powered into the ATP-WTA Indian Wells Masters semi-finals but the match to determine his opponent was put on hold when a swarm of bees forced Carlos Alcaraz and Alexander Zverev from the court.
Defending champion Alcaraz and Germany’s Zverev were just two games into their quarter-final clash when the bees drove them from Stadium Court.
World number two Alcaraz swatted and swiped at the insects in alarm before seeking shelter.
The bees swarmed the remote-controlled “spider cam” and Alcaraz and Zverev had already run for cover when chair umpire Mohamed Lahyani announced “Ladies and gentlemen, play is suspended due to bee invasion.”
A beekeeper was summoned and removed the bees clustered on the aerial camera and the players were brought back on court to warm up.
After the beekeeper sprayed remaining stray bees around the on-court scoreboards and the players chairs and equipment — to cheers from the crowd — play resumed after a delay of almost two hours.
Alcaraz, chasing his first title since he vanquished Novak Djokovic at Wimbledon last July, has gone from strength to strength in the California desert, showing no sign that the sprained ankle that forced him out of his opening match in Rio de Janeiro in February is still troubling him.
But Zverev, ranked sixth in the world, has won five of their eight prior meetings, including that Australian Open upset.
Sinner is back in the Indian Wells semi-finals a year after losing to Alcaraz in the final four.
The Italian pushed his match winning streak to 19-0 with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Czech Jiri Lehecka.
Sinner’s win streak stretches back through last year’s Davis Cup finals and includes a perfect 16-0 record in 2024.
Different situation
Since capturing his first Grand Slam title in Melbourne Sinner has also lifted the trophy in Rotterdam.
In breezy conditions on court two, Sinner was in firm control, breaking early in each set and saving the only break point he faced in the match.
“Today was for sure a different situation,” Sinner said. “In the beginning was windy, but I handled it very well.
“He’s an incredible player with huge potential from both swings. He was serving really well. For sure I’m happy about the performance.
“There was not so much rhythm today, so, you know, it’s a little bit different kind of matchup, but for sure I’m really happy about the performance and happy to be back here in the semi-finals.”
Two other top-10 players clash when fourth-ranked Daniil Medvedev — runner-up to Alcaraz last year — takes on number seven Holger Rune — who saved a match point on the way to victory over 2022 Indian Wells winner Taylor Fritz on Wednesday.
The winner of that match will play American Tommy Paul, who turned the tables on Casper Ruud with a 6-2, 1-6, 6-3 victory over the ninth-ranked Norwegian.
Paul belted 35 winners, saving two break points when serving for the match before clinching it on his second match point.
“It’s awesome,” said Paul, who had dropped four of his five prior meetings with Ruud. “I’m really pumped with how I’m playing.”


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