BNP Paribas Open 2023 has started in full swing, with main draw first round kicked-off on Wednesday. First round consists of 32 matches between unseeded players, which emerge the opponents for seeds, who start their Indian Wells campaign from second round, having a bye in R1. Despite the biggest stars being no involved in action, there were some exciting matches played and unexpected results happened so far on first day.
Linda Fruhvirtova showed a great spirit, coming back from being a set down after crushing 0-6 lose in opening set against Mayar Sherif. The 17-years old Czech who was pre-match favorite, regrouped herself well and fought back with convicing performance in two following set, crossing the line with a score 0-6 6-2 6-3.
Local fans could enjoy two all-American three-setters in WTA matches on Wednesday. Shelby Rogers eliminated the last week's semifinalist of ATX Open - Katie Volynets, who was granted with a wild-card to BNP Paribas Open. Rogers did not disappointes in a role of pre-match favorite and the more experienced American advanced to second round with a score 6-4 4-6 6-1, with a dominating performance in final set. Elizabeth Mandlik and Alison Riske Amritraj delivered a ton of emotions in their thrilling match, which was deciding in a third-set tiebreak. Mandlik utilized her chance in form of wild card quite well, upsetting her fellowcountry opponent 6-3 5-7 7-6(1). Mandlik was very close to finish the match in two sets, while being 4-1 up in second set with double break. Riske Amritraj came back from this score, forcing a decider. Mandlik could give away another chance in the decider, as she was 6-5 and 30-0 up within own serve, but her experienced opponent came back again, forcing a tiebreak. Mandlik did not waste her third big chance, being a dominative force in a tie-break, and moving into second round, where she awaits for a big challenge as Petra Kvitova is her next opponent.
There was not the only one thrilling match ended up with an upset today, as the last week's ATX Open champion Marta Kostyuk got eliminated by Rebecca Peterson after 3 hours of battle. The Swede won 7-5 5-7 7-5. This match had a couple of momentum switches. The Ukrainian can regret the chances from first set, when she did not convert any of 4 setpoints during Peterson's service game. The world's number 103 was close to give away a big advantage, as Kostyuk made up a double-break gap, coming back from 0-3 score to 4-4. The Swede gained decisive break in 11th game of decider and moved into second round, where she faces Shuai Zhang.
The ATP matches have also delivered some interesting stories. Gael Monfils came back to competition after 7 months of break. His comeback was not succesful tough, as he lost to Jordan Thompson 3-6 1-6. The Aussie needed just 65 minutes to move into second round, where he faces the tournament's seed #2 - Stefanos Tsitsipas.
Yibing Wu played for the first time since winning his maiden ATP title in Dallas. The Chinese had a difficult match against Jaume Munar. The Spaniard won first set in tense tie-break, ended up with a score 8-6. Wu fought back in style, winning second set to love and secured the victory in third set's tie-break, moving up with a score 6-7(6) 6-0 7-6(3). Alejandro Davidovich Fokina is the next opponent for the Chinese.
Diego Schwartzman earned a breakthrough win, which ended up the series of 5 loses in a row for the Argentinian. Schwartzman defeated his fellowcountry Federico Coria 6-1 6-2 and will face tournament's third seed Casper Ruud in next round.
Alexander Bublik suffered quite an upset, losing to Wu Tung-Lin. The player from Taivan, ranked #175 in ATP list, eliminated the Kazakh quite easily, earning his biggest career's win with a score 6-4 6-4 and advancing to second round, where he will face Cameron Norrie.
Here are the ATP matches highlights from Day 1: