Top seed Iga Swiatek spurned the chance for a double-bagel victory over Claire Liu at the Indian Wells Open on Saturday but she still cruised into the third round in 66 minutes.

The 21-year-old Pole, who won last year's Indian Wells, had match point at 6-0 5-0, before Liu rallied back on serve to avoid the ignominy of a double-bagel defeat, with Swiatek eventually winning 6-0 6-1.

Swiatek was in a dominant mood, winning 57 of 83 points for the match and converting five of nine break points generated. She dropped only 11 points in seven service games.

The three-time grand slam champion is 13-3 on the season, with all 13 wins coming in straight sets. In five of those matches, she has dropped just one game.

Former US Open winner Emma Raducanu moved into the third round with a 7-6 (7-3) 6-2 win over 20th seed and 2023 Australian Open semi-finalist Magda Linette.

Raducanu's win meant she has put together back-to-back victories for the first time since September, setting up a clash with 13th-seed Beatriz Haddad Maia after she beat Katerina Siniakova 5-7 7-6 (7-4) 6-3.

Fourth seed Ons Jabeur fought back from a set down to prevail over Magdalena Frech 4-6 6-4 6-1 in one hour and 44 minutes.

Former US Open champion Bianca Andreescu also overcame an early deficit to win 4-6 6-4 6-3 over Peyton Stearns.

Reigning Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina got the edge in a tight two-set clash with 2020 Australian Open winner Sofia Kenin, triumphing 7-6 (8-6) 7-6 (7-5) in two hours and 10 minutes. Rybakina fought back from 4-1 down in the second frame.

Fifth seed Caroline Garcia overcame a wobble to win 6-1 6-7 (4-7) 6-4 over Hungary's Dalma Galfi, with 30th seed Leylah Fernandez her next opponent after beating Emma Navarro 6-2 6-4.

Two-time major winner and three-time US Open finalist Victoria Azarenka was the big casualty from the day's play, losing 7-6 (7-1) 6-3 to 2021 Australian Open semi-finalist Karolina Muchova.

Aryna Sabalenka showed exactly why she is ranked second in the world as she dominated her opening match of the Indian Wells Open on Friday against Evgeniya Rodina.

Belarus' Sabalenka needed just 66 minutes to defeat the Russian 6-2 6-0, taking advantage of her first-round bye to book her spot in the third round against Ukraine's Lesia Tsurenko.

Tsurenko had to come from behind against the in-form Donna Vekic, fresh off her Monterrey Open title last week, but that big effort may have had the Croatian with heavy legs as she ran out of steam 2-6 6-2 6-2.

It was a strong day for the Ukranians as 27th seed Anhelina Kalinina beat the Czech Republic's Linda Fruhvirtova 4-6 6-4 7-5, and she will next face Greece's Maria Sakkari.

Sakkari, the seventh seed, had to deal with adversity after a poor first set against Shelby Rogers, coming back to win 2-6 6-4 6-0.

Olympic gold medallist Belinda Bencic lost her Swiss showdown against Jil Teichmann 3-6 6-3 6-3, while Veronika Kudermetova got the better of her Russian compatriot Anna Blinkova 6-3 6-4.

The second-highest ranked American in the field, Coco Gauff, had no issues dispatching Spain's Cristina Bucsa 6-2 6-4. But it was tougher work for America's top hope Jessica Pegula as she was pushed all the way by recent Merida Open champion Camila Giorgi, before prevailing 3-6 6-1 6-2.

World number three Stefanos Tsitsipas has left the Indian Wells Masters without a win after a shock 7-6 (7-0) 4-6 7-6 (7-5) loss to Jordan Thompson on Friday.

Tsitsipas, the second seed with Novak Djokovic not present, received a bye through to the second round, and he showed some rust with three double faults in the opening set. 

Thompson capitalised, with an incredible 21 winners to only two unforced errors in the first set, and he closed it out with 15 winners and four unforced errors in the deciding frame for the biggest win of his career.

The Australian will now meet Chile's Alejandro Tabilo in the third round after he upset 32nd seed Maxime Cressy in a gruelling 7-6 (7-3) 7-6 (15-13) triumph.

Meanwhile, it was smooth sailing for third seed Casper Ruud in his 6-2 6-3 victory over Diego Schwartzman, and a similar story for fifth seed Daniil Medvedev in his 6-4 6-3 result against Brandon Nakashima.

Alexander Zverev, the 12th seed, had no issues in his 6-3 6-1 domination of Pedro Cachin in 77 minutes, and 13th seed Karen Khachanov also took exactly 77 minutes to see off Oscar Otte 6-3 6-3.

England's 10th seed Cameron Norrie breezed past Tung-lin Wu 6-2 6-4, while Italy's 20th seed Matteo Berrettini suffered an early 7-6 (7-5) 0-6 6-3 exit at the hands of Japan's Taro Daniel.

In the late window, after a lengthy weather delay, 14th seed Frances Tiafoe won his all-American showdown against Marcos Giron 6-2 6-2.

Emma Raducanu has revealed the wrist injury which ended her 2022 season has returned, though she remains hopeful of playing at the Indian Wells Open.

Raducanu saw her 2022 season cut short by a problem with her right wrist, while a bout of tonsillitis caused her to miss last week's Austin Open.

The 2021 US Open winner was seen practising with strapping on both wrists on Wednesday, ahead of Thursday's Indian Wells opener against Danka Kovinic.

Asked about her fitness, Raducanu told BBC Sport: "The same issue that I had last year has started to flare back up.

"I've definitely been managing my load. It's something that has just come back, so I'm trying to be as cautious as possible. I'm going to do everything I can to be there tomorrow."

Raducanu's recent struggles with tonsillitis represented the latest setback of a year in which she has played just four competitive matches, and the 20-year-old has been frustrated by her lack of time on court. 

"It affected me badly for the short term, so I haven't prepared much. I've probably never felt so sick in my life," Raducanu reflected. 

"When it rains, it pours. This [the wrist injury] and the infection… it's obviously a challenge. My preparation hasn't been ideal. I played on the weekend and then I rested it. It's how you manage things when you aren't prepared."

Former world number six Gael Monfils' return to the ATP Tour ended with a straight-sets first-round defeat to Jordan Thompson at the Indian Wells Open on Wednesday.

The 37-year-old Frenchman has not played competitively since August last year due to injury but was eliminated by Thompson 6-3 6-1 in one hour and five minutes.

The Australian was ruthless, converting four of six break points generated, while he did not offer up any to Monfils.

Monfils was rusty, committing 17 unforced errors to Thompson's five, but the veteran hit 14 winners.

Thompson's victory earns him a second-round meeting with second seed Stefanos Tsitsipas.

Brandon Nakashima won the battle of the Americans, getting past John Isner 7-6 (9-7) 6-3 in one hour and 39 minutes. Nakashima progresses to face fifth seed Daniil Medvedev.

China's Wu Yibing produced some thrilling tennis, including an astonishing volley, in his 6-7 (6-8) 6-0 7-6 (7-3) victory over Jaume Munar.

World number 38 Diego Schwartzman won 6-1 6-2 over fellow Argentinian Federico Coria, while 47th-ranked Jiri Lehecka got past Arthur Rinderknech 7-6 (7-4) 7-5.

Australia's Jason Kubler toppled Lorenzo Sonego 6-4 7-6 (7-4) in almost two hours, while 42nd-ranked Bernabe Zapata Miralles was beaten 6-2 7-6 (8-6) by Ugo Humbert.

Finland's Emil Ruusovuori triumphed with Constant Lestienne retiring down 6-4 4-1 and world number 46 Alexander Bublik was a shock casualty, going down 6-4 6-4 to Wu Ting-Lin.

Last week's ATX Open champion Marta Kostyuk was bundled out in the Indian Wells Open first round by last month's Merida Open runner-up Rebecca Peterson on Wednesday.

The Swedish qualifier, who reached her first WTA final in four years in Merida having had her 2022 derailed by injury, triumphed 7-5 5-7 7-5 over the Ukrainian world number 40 in almost three hours.

Kostyuk, ranked 40th in the world, was not helped by 17 double faults across the match, with Peterson progressing to the second round where she will face 22nd seed Zhang Shuai.

Alize Cornet was also a surprise first-round loser, going down 6-2 7-5 to 427th-ranked Evgeniya Rodina in one hour and 42 minutes.

Rodina's prize for her shock victory is a second-round date with 2023 Australian champion and second seed Aryna Sabalenka.

Camila Giorgi, who beat Peterson for the aforementioned Merida Open crown last month, won through with a routine 6-3 6-3 victory over Arantxa Rus. Giorgi will next face third seed Jessica Pegula.

World number 41 Shelby Rogers was pushed for two hours and 22 minutes by Katie Volynets but triumphed 6-4 4-6 6-1. Rogers will take on seventh seed Maria Sakkari in the second round.

China's Wang Xin, making her Indian Wells debut, defeated former world number 12 Elise Mertens 6-3 6-1, while world number 33 Zhu Lin was downed by Lesia Tsurenko 6-4 6-3.

Aliaksandra Sasnovich won 6-3 7-6 (7-5) over veteran Kaia Kanepi, while 53rd-ranked Linda Fruhvirtova fought back after copping a bagel to win 0-6 6-2 6-3 over 52nd-ranked Mayar Sherif.

Jil Teichman set up a second-round clash with Swiss compatriot Belinda Bencic after a 6-1 6-4 victory over Ashlyn Krueger.

Ron DeSantis, the governor of Florida, has appealed to United States President Joe Biden to overturn a ban which will see Novak Djokovic miss this month's Indian Wells and Miami Open tournaments. 

The world number one remains unvaccinated against Covid-19 and submitted a request for special permission to play in the two ATP Masters 1000 events in the US, with Miami set to start in under two weeks. 

However, the Serbian has already been forced to withdraw from Indian Wells after his request was denied by American officials. 

The US is expected to lift its ban on unvaccinated travellers in May but, in a letter to Biden on Tuesday, DeSantis urged them to reconsider their ban on Djokovic ahead of the Miami Open in his state.

"This denial is unfair, unscientific and unacceptable," DeSantis wrote in the letter, which he posted on social media. 

"The only thing keeping Mr Djokovic from participating in this tournament is your administration's continued enforcement of a misguided, unscientific, and out-of-date Covid-19 vaccination requirement for foreign guests. 

"I urge you to reconsider. It's time to put pandemic politics aside and give the American people what they want - let him play." 

Florida senator Marco Rubio and Indian Wells tournament director Tommy Haas are two other figures who have also expressed their desire to see the ban overturned. 

Djokovic has been involved in regular controversies as a result of his Covid-19 vaccine stance, previously stating he would be willing to forgo grand slam opportunities rather than have the vaccination. 

The 22-time grand slam champion missed the Australian Open last year after being deported over the issue but returned in January 2023 to win his 10th title in Melbourne, defeating Stefanos Tsitsipas in the final. 

Djokovic has not competed in either the Indian Wells or Miami Open since 2019. He has won Indian Wells on five occasions and is a record six-time winner in Miami.

DeSantis has been tipped a potential Republican presidential candidate who could take on Biden at the 2024 election if he can beat Donald Trump to his party's nomination.

Andy Murray expects Russian and Belarusian players to feature at Wimbledon in 2023, though he understands if the ban is upheld.

Last year, players from both nations were prevented from participating following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the ban resulting in Wimbledon being stripped of ranking points.

Additionally, the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) was fined £1.4million by the ATP and WTA due to players being excluded.

It is yet to be announced whether the ban will remain in place for this year's competition, though Murray expects there to be no such limitations.

"It's a really difficult one and I do feel for the players who weren't able to play last year – but I also understand the situation and why it's really hard for Wimbledon to make a call on it as well," he told BBC Sport.

"My understanding is that they are going to be allowed to play and I'm not going to be going nuts if that is the case.

"But if Wimbledon went down another route, I would be understanding of that."

Murray's comments came at Indian Wells, where he faces Tomas Etcheverry on Thursday, with the potential of an all-British affair against Dan Evans or Jack Draper in the third round.

Evans and Draper will face off in the second round if the latter beats Leandro Riedi, while Murray would have to defeat Etcheverry and Pablo Carreno Busta to set up a tussle with either of his compatriots.

But Murray insists he is not looking that far ahead.

"To be honest, I don't really care that much. Obviously, I can see why it's interesting, and if Evo [Evans] plays against Jack I'll be interested in the match," he added.

"But I'm not particularly bothered by it and for me it's not going to impact me until the third round. I need to get there and this is not always a tournament where I have played amazingly."

Novak Djokovic's absence from the Indian Wells Open has caused a stir in US politics, and on the tennis court it is hugely significant, too.

Sport was given a jolt three years ago when Indian Wells organisers cancelled the event on the eve of action getting under way, citing one local case of COVID-19.

At that point, on March 8, 2020, there had been more than 500 confirmed cases across the United States, with 21 deaths. Soon enough, events across the globe were being postponed or scrubbed.

Coronavirus travel restrictions prevented the unvaccinated Djokovic from taking part last year, and they will keep him away again this time, despite calls from two Florida senators for the jab requirement to be lifted by President Biden to allow the Serbian into the country.

With the world number one sidelined, Daniil Medvedev and Carlos Alcaraz look likely challengers for the men's title. There have been surprise champions in recent times, with Cameron Norrie winning in 2021 and Taylor Fritz carrying off the title 12 months ago, so it would be hasty to rule out something similar.

In the women's event, there has not been a successful title defence since Martina Navratilova won in 1990 and 1991. That can partly be attributed to Serena and Venus Williams boycotting for over a decade at the peak of their powers after complaining of facing racial abuse, and in their absence no player stepped up to dominate.

Iga Swiatek triumphed in Indian Wells and Miami last season, racking up the 'Sunshine Double', and she starts as a strong favourite again, but defeat in the recent Dubai final to Barbora Krejcikova showed the 21-year-old rankings leader will not have everything her way this season.

First-round action gets under way on Wednesday, after two days of qualifying, and here Stats Perform, with Opta data, looks at what lies ahead.

After Norrie and Fritz, could there be another shock men's winner?

Djokovic has won a joint-record five Indian Wells titles, but he last featured in 2019, when he lost to Philipp Kohlschreiber in round three.

Rafael Nadal is also absent this time with a hip injury, and with Roger Federer retired this will be the second Indian Wells main draw since 2000, after 2021, to feature none of the ATP Big Three.

The Big Three was a Big Four at one point, though, and Andy Murray will be competing. It is one of the two Masters 1000 tournaments Murray has never won, along with Monte Carlo, having triumphed at the other seven. Murray has the most match wins at Indian Wells among all men competing this time, having 28 to his name, two more than John Isner who sits next on the list.

No ATP player has a better win percentage at Indian Wells than Djokovic (84.7 per cent), who has won 50 of his 59 matches, while the now-retired Federer has appeared in the most finals (nine), also winning five times, so there is no doubt the field is missing its long-time classiest acts.

Fritz last year became the first men's champion aged under 25 years old since Djokovic in 2011, and he was also the first American to take the men's title since Andre Agassi beat Pete Sampras in the 2001 final.

Medvedev has won three consecutive tournaments in the lead-up this year, tearing to titles in Rotterdam, Doha and Dubai, but the Russian has a disappointing record at Indian Wells, having yet to reach the quarter-finals in five visits.

Just four players this century, including Alcaraz last year, have reached the semi-final stage before turning 20, with Nadal, Djokovic and Murray the other three. Alcaraz is still only 19 but a shade older than Boris Becker when he was a 19-year-old champion in 1987, the youngest men's winner.

Who else might come through? It feels like a free-for-all and Felix Auger-Aliassime will be hoping for a breakthrough tournament, with the Canadian being the only member of the current ATP top 10 to have never reached a final at ATP 1000 level. It has to happen sooner rather than later, surely.

Swiatek bids to lift curse of women's champions

Ever since Navratilova's two in a row, being a back-to-back champion at Indian Wells has been beyond all singles players on the WTA side.

Indeed, the only players to reach the final the year after their title run have been Lindsay Davenport (champion 1997, runner-up 1998) and Ana Ivanovic (champion 2008, runner-up 2009).

Nine women have won twice at Indian Wells, but none have managed three or more titles. The nine are: Steffi Graf, Mary Joe Fernandez, Navratilova, Daniela Hantuchova, Serena Williams, Kim Clijsters, Victoria Azarenka, Davenport and Maria Sharapova.

A Swiatek victory would make it a club of 10, but there is a club of one when it comes to players who have captured two titles without dropping a set in either trophy run. Sharapova is the only player to pull off that feat, with her 2006 and 2013 glory runs.

Among all women, Davenport has reached the most finals (six) and won the most matches (47), with Azarenka having the most wins among active WTA players (34).

Navratilova remains the oldest champion, having won aged 34 in 1991, while Martina Hingis and Serena Williams won as 17-year-olds in 1998 and 1999.

Shocks can happen: Bianca Andreescu took the title as a wildcard in 2019, while Jenny Byrne reached the final as a qualifier in 1989, the first year the women's event was staged.

If there is to be a teenage women's finalist this time, maybe it will be Coco Gauff. The American turns 19 midway through the tournament, on March 13, and has yet to reach a WTA 1000 final, although she got to the French Open title match last year, where Swiatek inflicted a heavy defeat.

Perhaps Aryna Sabalenka can reprise her Australian Open form, having won a first major in Melbourne. But Sabalenka's record in Indian Wells is a rough one, with the Belarusian yet to go past the fourth round.

Strap in for a thrill ride. They all want to stop Swiatek, but if any player can defy history it might just be the Pole.

Novak Djokovic will not feature at the Indian Wells Open.

It was confirmed by tournament organisers on Sunday that the world number one would miss the first Masters 1000 tournament of the season.

As he is not vaccinated against COVID-19, Djokovic had applied for special permission to enter the United States, but that has seemingly been denied.

Until at least April 10, international visitors to the US must have proof of vaccination.

Djokovic, a five-time winner at Indian Wells, is also set to miss the Miami Open later in March, while his participation in the US Open could be in doubt.

The 22-time grand slam champion – who reached the semi-finals at the Dubai Tennis Championships last week – missed last year's major at Flushing Meadows due to his vaccination status. He was, however, allowed to play in this season's Australian Open.

Nikoloz Basilashvili moved into the main field following Djokovic's withdrawal.

Novak Djokovic was waiting on Saturday to learn whether he would get last-minute clearance to enter the United States to play at Indian Wells and Miami, as American tennis chiefs threw support behind the world number one.

US senator Rick Scott claimed Djokovic has been refused permission by the US Department of Homeland Security for a vaccine waiver and urged president Joe Biden to intervene on behalf of the Serbian and "fix this NOW".

Scott was backed by fellow senator Marco Rubio, who wrote on Twitter: "@DjokerNole [Djokovic] shouldn’t be prohibited from playing in the @MiamiOpen because of unconstitutional vaccine mandates.

"@POTUS [Biden] should immediately grant Djokovic a waiver to the vaccine mandate for international travellers."

Djokovic has refused to be vaccinated against COVID-19 and that stance has cost him places in two grand slam tournaments, being deported before last year's Australian Open and then denied permission to compete at the US Open later in the season.

It has also meant he has had to miss regular tour events in the United States, which demands international travellers are fully vaccinated.

Scott and Rubio are both senators for Florida, and accordingly their focus is on the Miami Open, which runs from March 22 to April 2.

More pressingly for the 35-year-old Djokovic, the Indian Wells tournament begins in the coming week, with main draw singles matches getting under way on Wednesday.

A statement posted on the US Open Twitter page confirmed support for the 22-time grand slam winner.

It read: "Novak Djokovic is one [of] the greatest champions our sport has ever seen.

"The USTA and US Open are hopeful that Novak is successful in his petition to enter the country, and that the fans will be able to see him back in action at Indian Wells and Miami."

Rafael Nadal has withdrawn from the Indian Wells Open as he continues his recovery from a hip injury.

Nadal sustained the injury during his straight-sets defeat to Mackenzie McDonald at the Australian Open in January, struggling to move around the court during the closing stages of the contest in Melbourne.

A day after that match, the Spaniard wrote on Twitter: "I have carried out medical tests after the defeat yesterday. The MRI shows a grade two lesion in the iliopsoas of the left leg. Now it's sports rest and anti-inflammatory physiotherapy. Normal recovery time six to eight weeks."

It seems that Indian Wells, the first ATP Masters 1000 event of the season, has come too soon for the 36-year-old, and it remains to be seen if he will be able to compete at the Miami Open later in March.

The tournament's director, Tommy Haas, said on Tuesday: "We wish Rafa continued healing, and hope to see him back at the BNP Paribas Open next year."

Nadal reached the final of last year's tournament at Indian Wells, where he lost to American Taylor Fritz. 

He has won three titles at Indian Wells, but the last came back in 2013.

Nick Kyrgios has withdrawn from next month's Indian Wells Open as he continues to recover from knee surgery.

The 2022 Wimbledon runner-up has not been in action this season, having been forced to pull out of the Australian Open in January due to a small lateral meniscus tear.

Kyrgios underwent surgery soon after and was targeting the opening Masters 1000 event of the season at Indian Wells for his first tournament back.

However, event organisers confirmed on Monday the 27-year-old is still not ready to return.

"Nick Kyrgios has withdrawn from the 2023 BNP Paribas Open due to an ongoing knee injury," a statement read.

Indian Wells gets under way on March 6 and is followed by the Miami Open at the end of the month.

Kyrgios' last competitive singles match came in October at the Japan Open, which he withdrew from ahead of the quarter-finals.

The Australian, a two-time quarter-finalist on the hard courts at Indian Wells, has slipped down to 19th in the ATP Rankings.

Novak Djokovic says his participation at the Indian Wells Open and Miami Open is "out of his control".

Djokovic, who last month won the Australian Open to move level with Rafael Nadal on 22 grand slam titles, has not played since claiming the title in Melbourne.

The world number one was nursing a hamstring issue throughout the season's first major, but he confirmed at a press conference in Belgrade on Wednesday that he will return to action at the Dubai Tennis Championships next week.

Djokovic could not compete in the United States last season due to his COVID-19 vaccination status, though his brother Djordje has claimed the 35-year-old has applied for a "special permit" to enter the country.

He has received clearance from the tournament organisers to play at the two Masters 1000 events at Indian Wells and in Miami but now faces a wait to find out if the U.S. government will grant him entry.

"The process for that has started. It is out of my control now," Djokovic said.

"I'd love to play and I'm glad I received the approval of directors in Miami and Indian Wells. I hope the decision makers will give the approval."

On his progress on the injury front, Djokovic explained: "As for the injury I sustained at the Australian Open, it's healed, but I'm not 100 per cent yet.

"Things are looking very good. As a team, we made the decision to go to Dubai."

Djokovic has won the Dubai Tennis Championships five times, though the last of those titles came in 2020.

He was knocked out by Jiri Vesely in the quarter-finals last year.

Djokovic this week tied Steffi Graf on 377 weeks spent as world number one.

The outright record is set to become his next week, with Carlos Alcaraz unable to surpass him even if the young Spaniard wins the Rio Open.

Nick Kyrgios is aiming to return to action at Indian Wells after undergoing successful surgery on his knee, his manager Daniel Horsfall confirmed.

The 2022 Wimbledon runner-up was left "devastated" after being forced to withdraw from the Australian Open on home soil last week.

Kyrgios was ruled out of his home grand slam after an MRI scan on his knee revealed a cyst as a result of a small lateral meniscus tear.

He went under the knife on Monday and is now battling to be ready in time for the first Masters 1000 event of the season at Indian Wells, which starts on March 6.

"The surgery was a great success," Horsfall told Australian newspaper The Herald.

"We couldn't have been more pleased with the outcome of it. Now we will be pushing ahead for a speedy recovery and are aiming to see everyone at Indian Wells."

Kyrgios won the seventh ATP Tour singles title of his career in Washington last August and claimed the Australian Open men's doubles title with Thanasi Kokkinakis 12 months ago.

The 27-year-old, who has yet to play competitively this season, is a two-time quarter-finalist on the hard courts at Indian Wells.

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