An event already underway in sunny southern California, the 2023 Indian Wells Masters features a grand prize of $8.8 million up for grabs on the men’s side of the tournament. Following news this weekend that world No. 1 player Novak Djokovic decided to withdraw from participating in the “fifth grand slam,”, the field is now more wide-open with Joker out. With that in mind, 2022 men’s singles champion Taylor Fritz returns to the field as one of the top favorites. Another player to watch out for is Daniil Medvedev who is coming into the competition as the fifth overall seed but is seen as the odds-on favorite to take home the title. Moreover, Carlos Alcaraz, the No. 1 seed at the tournament, has the chance to challenge Djokovic for the number one overall ranking with a strong performance at Indian Wells.
For this article, SBS will be going over what to look for from each player along with more thoughts and information about wagering on tennis.
|2023 ATP Indian Wells – Men's singles|
Ranked as the No. 7 player in the world, the 2021 U.S. Open champion has 18 career titles to his name. The Russian tennis player has had a strong start to 2023 with three titles in five tournament appearances. In fact, he has accrued a win-loss record of 19-2 on hardcourts which is easily his best surface and gives him a winning percentage of 90% on the year. While he has never won at Indian Wells, he made his only appearance in 2019, it would be unwise to count out the former world No. 2 so quickly. Moreover, with Djokovic out, Medvedev will not have to worry about his vaunted rival (1-3 in Grand Slam finals vs. Joker).
Known as a player with an aggressive baseline that forces opponents all over the court, Tsitsipas is one of the most powerful players in the sport. The Greek star has been ranked as the No. 3 player in the world and has made a total of 25 career final matches. Reaching the quarterfinals last year at Indian Wells, Tsitsipas is angling for an even better performance over the next two weeks. While he has yet to win a championship this year, he still has been able to accrue an overall record of 13-2 on the year.
The No. 2 ranked player on the ATP circuit, Alcaraz is a sensational star at just 19 years of age. Winning the 2022 installment of the U.S. Open, he missed the 2023 Australian Open so this will be his biggest tournament to date this year. The prodigy has missed a couple of different matches as of late due to a nagging hamstring injury but should be in shape for Indian Wells. Finishing last year ranked as the No. 1 player, he has a chance to recapture that title with a strong performance in SoCal.
Returning to his native southern California, Fritz has five career titles to his credit but is looking for his sixth at his old (sort of) stomping grounds. While he did not graduate from Torrey Pines High School in nearby north county San Diego, the 25-year-old still has a great feel for the area. Ending last year as the No. 9 ranked player on the ATP circuit, Fritz has rolled out of 2023 strong with one title out of tour tournaments he has appeared in.
Prediction: In what certainly will be a great display of raw talent, look for Alcaraz to shake off the injury woes and capture the title at Indian Wells.
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