Indian Wells (California), March 12 (IANS) Second-seeded German Angelique Kerber notched one of her most convincing wins of the season at the BNP Paribas Open hard-court tennis tournament, cruising to a 6-2, 6-1 second-round victory over compatriot Andrea Petkovic in less than an hour.
Kerber will return to No. 1 spot ahead of American Serena Williams, when the next world rankings are released. Kerber has struggled thus far in 2017. But in her Indian Wells opener on Saturday, she appeared to rediscover the form that led her to two Grand Slam titles last year.
She broke Petkovic’s serve on five occasions and did not drop her own serve once, reports Efe.
“It was not so easy,” Kerber said afterwards. “We’ve known each other forever, and it’s always tough to play a friend on court. But I just tried to focus on my game and on my side of the court.”
Next up for Kerber in the third round will be France’s Pauline Parmentier, who upset Yulia Putintseva of Kazakhstan 6-2, 6-3 on Saturday.
In other women’s second-round singles action Saturday, 13th-seeded Dane Caroline Wozniacki trounced Polish qualifier Magda Linette 6-3, 6-0, rising Japanese star Naomi Osaka defeated Chinese No. 30 seed Zhang Shuai 6-4, 6-2, Czech Katerina Siniakova upset 23rd-seeded Spaniard Carla Suarez-Navarro 6-3, 7-5, and American No. 9 seed Madison Keys topped Colombia’s Mariana Duque-Mariño 6-1, 7-5.
In men’s singles action at Indian Wells, Japanese Yoshihito Nishioka upset big-serving Croatian Ivo Karlovic, the No. 19 seed, 6-4, 6-3, while eighth-seeded Austrian Dominic Thiem cruised past Frenchman Jeremy Chardy 6-2, 6-4. Big-serving American John Isner edged Kazakhstan’s Mikhail Kukushkin 7-6 (7-0), 7-6 (8-6).