Court Report: Carreno Busta reaches first Masters semi; Wawrinka wins

by: Brad Kallet March 16, 2017

Each day on, we’ll feature Tennis Channel’s Court Report, a rundown of the day that was in the sport—along with our thoughts on what’s happening on the courts around the world.

When play began on Thursday at the BNP Paribas Open, Andy Murray, Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Marin Cilic and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga had all been eliminated.

Still standing in Indian Wells, however, were Pablo Carreno Busta and Pablo Cuevas. Battling for a semifinals spot, the all-Pablo quarterfinal didn’t disappoint.

Carreno Busta saved two match points and needed a third-set tiebreaker to beat Cuevas, 6-1, 3-6, 7-6 (4), avenging his loss to the Uruguayan in Sao Paulo earlier this month.

The Spaniard, seeded 21st and ranked 23rd, is into his first career Masters semifinal. The 25-year-old won his first two titles last year, in Winston-Salem and Moscow.

Carreno Busta hasn’t had to beat anyone in the Top 15 en route to the semis, but a significant challenge awaits him in the next round. He’ll play third-seeded Stan Wawrinka for a spot in the final. Wawrinka narrowly edged eighth-seeded Dominic Thiem, 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 (2), in the final match of the day.

In women’s action, Kristina Mladenovic came from a set and a break down to stun former world No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki, 3-6, 7-6 (4), 6-2. The Frenchwoman hadn’t beaten the Dane in three previous tries.

Like Carreno Busta, the 28th seed advanced to her first career Premier semifinal, where she’ll meet Elena Vesnina. Vesnina knocked off Venus Williams, 6-2, 4-6, 6-3.

With Mladenovic’s run in the desert, she’ll make her Top 20 debut in the WTA rankings next week.

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