Serena Williams reaches Indian Wells quarterfinals

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Serena Williams. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI
Serena Williams. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

Top-seeded Serena Williams cruised into the quarterfinals of the BNP Paribas Open, routing Ukrainian qualifier Kateryna Bondarenko 6-2, 6-2 Tuesday in the fourth round at Indian Wells, Calif

Williams won 72 percent of her first-serve points, and she piled up 17 break points, converting 11 of them.


Her quarterfinal opponent will be fifth-seeded Simona Halep of Romania, who advanced when the Czech Republic's Barbora Strycova retired while trailing 6-3, 1-0. Strycova was dealing with an upper-respiratory illness.

Third-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland defeated 19th-seeded Jelena Jankovic of Serbia 6-3, 6-3 to advance to the quarters. Radwanska will meet eighth-seeded Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic, who rallied to beat American qualifier Nicole Gibbs 4-6, 6-3, 6-4.

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In men's third-round action, Rafael Nadal survived an epic second-set tiebreaker to post a 6-0, 7-6 (9) win over Spanish countryman Fernando Verdasco.

Nadal, seeded fourth, rolled through the first set with help from five Verdasco double faults. The second set featured four service breaks before Nadal emerged with a win in a 20-point tiebreaker.


Tiebreakers also were the key as Kei Nishikori won his third-round match. The fifth-seeded Japanese player edged American Steve Johnson 7-6 (6), 7-6 (5).

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Ninth-seeded John Isner also sealed his victory in a tiebreaker, topping France's Adrian Mannarino 6-4, 7-6 (4).

The longest tiebreaker of the day went the way of a player who lost his match. Fourteenth-seeded Roberto Baustista Agut of Spain fell 7-6 (5), 6-7 (10), 6-4 to 18th-seeded Feliciano Lopez of Spain.

Germany's Alexander Zverev knocked off 16th-seeded Gilles Simon of France 6-2, 6-2, while 11th-seeded Dominic Thiem of Austria topped 21st-seeded American Jack Sock 7-5, 6-7 (5), 6-1.

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