A highly intriguing third round contest is scheduled to take place between Serbian No. 2 Ana Ivanovic and young American Sloane Stephens. This is the third time they meet on the professional tour, having clashed twice during the third round of the US Open in 2011-2012. The Ivanovic vs Stephens head-to-head stands at 2-0, with the Serb having won both those match-ups in relatively comfortable fashion.
In the first match played on the Stadium 4, the 2008 Indian Wells champion and No.11 seed Ana Ivanovic had to fight hard to gain the edge over world No.43 Elina Svitolina. Down a set, the World No.13 had to regroup and find some her best tennis to arrive at the third round, winning with the final score of 4-6 7-5 7-6(1) after 2 hours and 28 minutes. She will look for a much smoother performance against the budding American talent, whom she is yet to lose to.
American No. 2 Sloane Stephens cruised into the third round in Indian Wells with a 6-4, 6-0 victory over Tomi Janovic. Stephens has been dealing with a wrist injury since the start of the season, yet it did not appear to be hinder her performance on court. She will look to string together back-to-back victories on the tour for the first time since the Australian Open.
This marks the third time these two competitors will meet on the professional tour, with Ivanovic leading the series 2-0. Both her victories came on hard court surfaces at the US Open in 2011-12. It has been almost two years since their last meeting, which will likely factor into their performances tomorrow, as Stephens witnessed a career-breakthrough in 2013, while Ivanovic is in a possible career resurgence this season following her surprise upset over Serena Williams at the Australian Open and her title win in Auckland. The Serb should be the favourite for tomorrow’s contest, as Stephens is still has the possibility of an inconsistent performance due to her injury.
Prediction: Ana Ivanovic in Three Sets