Federer on fire in Indian Wells

Federer on fire in Indian Wells

"In Rotterdam I played five matches in a row", he said. Federer hit a running forehand passing shot to break at love and take the set 6-2. "I mean, I just completely lost rhythm, everything". It should be noted that Federer is bidding to snap his own mark as the oldest player to ever win the tournament, after setting the record a year ago.

He has carried that form into 2018 and is now unbeaten this year, having made it 20 men's singles major titles following his Australian Open triumph in January. "I think it was a good match". "Nerves were there. I made so many unforced errors".

On his highly-anticipated return to the tour after right elbow surgery, Djokovic looked a shadow of his former self.

The 12-time Grand Slam champion was far from his best tennis. The top seed fended off a set point in the tiebreak to beat Delbonis 6-3 7-6 (6).

"I was a little bit exhausted this morning just because the turnaround is always pretty quick", he said.

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At one point he won 17 straight points en route to taking a 6-2, 3-0 lead, winning 10 of the final 11 games in the match. Yuki Bhambri of India pulled off a surprise when he toppled ninth-seeded Frenchman Lucas Pouille 6-4 6-4.

"But I'm happy that I actually was explosive out there today and I felt good".

Japan's Kei Nishikori withdrew through illness before playing his opening match of the tournament.

Also, American Taylor Fritz defeated Fernando Verdasco of Spain, 4-6, 6-2, 7-6 (7/1), Croatia's Borna Coric breezed past Roberto Bautista 6-1, 6-3 and Pablo Carreno-Busta of Spain, stopped Russian Daniil Medvedev 6-1, 7-5.

But Djokovic fell at the first hurdle with a shock loss to Japanese qualifier Taro Daniel, who sent the out-of-sorts Serb tumbling with a hard-fought 7-6 (7/3), 4-6, 6-1 victory.

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