Raonic Holds Off Kecmanovic To Reach Indian Wells Semi-Finals

Milos Raonic (photo: BNP Paribas Open)

INDIAN WELLS, March 15, 2019 (by Sharada Rajagopalan)

It was a disappointing day to say the least at the BNP Paribas Open on Thursday as only one men’s singles quarter-final match was played. Here is what transpired:

First, to begin the day, 13th seed Milos Raonic stopped lucky loser Miomir Kecmanovic in his tracks in the quarter-final, winning 6-3, 6-4. Not only did the Canadian successfully defend his semi-finalist’s points from the year before he also maintained the excellent track record he has enjoyed in the event, reaching his fourth semi-final in five consecutive years. The only time he did not reach the semi-finals was in 2017, when he withdrew before the start of the event with a hamstring injury. Some consistency, this.

Where Raonic extended his consistency, Gael Monfils’ consistent run came to a painful halt. An injury to his Achilles tendon brought a premature close to Monfils’ campaign in the event as he was forced to withdraw before his quarter-final against Dominic Thiem. The French player, however, was the epitome of class as he came out on-court to announce the news to the gathered spectators on the stands. “I’m so sorry guys,” apologised Monfils, adding, “I would like to thank you for everything you give me.”

In a case of good-natured one-upmanship, then, Thiem also made the gathered fans’ day with a practice session on Stadium I. Reportedly, Thiem, who had left the tournament grounds made a detour back because he felt bad about the fans not being getting to watch the match. Then, addressing the crowd on the stands, Thiem said, “I was looking forward to this match. Hope he feels better soon. It’s my first time on Centre Court this year. It’s always nice to hit on Centre with a great crowd.”

While fans will not forget these gestures from the players, they may not have enough time to dwell on it what with Friday bringing in more matches in the Californian desert.