Third seed Stan Wawrinka is still the man to beat this year as he extended his unbeaten run in 2014 by defeating Ivo Karlovic of Croatia in straight sets in the second round of the BNP Paribas Open. The recent Australian Open champion prevailed in a competitive opener where he converted the solitary break point of the set in sixth game and served it out with a hold to love. The neck-and-neck race continued as the Swiss’s serve remained intact over the course of the set two as well, whilst he efficiently turned in his second break point of the clash to break the deadlock again. The very first match point did the trick for the in-form Lausanne native who won 6-3, 7-5 to set up a third-round encounter against Andreas Seppi of Italy.
“I was a little bit scared the way I was going to come back, the way I was going to play, but after five, six days on the practice court with Magnus, I was feeling really good,” said Wawrinka. “I’m really happy with my level. I really think I’m playing great tennis.”
Wawrinka will be joined in the third round by his compatriot and Davis Cup partner Roger Federer – the former number one got the better off 123rd-ranked Frenchman Paul-Henri Mathieu and will be hoping to lift his fifth Indian Wells trophy next weekend. His serve was never under a threat in the 23-minute-long opener, whilst he broke the unseeded opponent on a couple of occasions to seize the set. Mathieu put up a much better fight in the second set where he fell a break behind, but eventually bailed himself out by saving a match point at 5-3* and denying FedEx to serve out the match in the follow-up game. However, the Swiss Maestro confirmed his good form by claiming the subsequent tie-break to complete a routine 6-2, 7-6 (5) victory. The seventh seed Swiss will face Russian player Dmitry Tursunov in the next round.