ATP TENNIS: Indian Wells has wholly entertained since the first match. The semi-finals take place on Saturday evening and, with the world number spot up for grabs, it is sure to keep our eyes glued to our screens. We preview the two men’s singles semi-finals below.
Indian Wells semi-final preview: Can Alcaraz reclaim the world number one status?
Daniil Medvedev v Frances Tiafoe
These two meet for the sixth time on the ATP Tour and, with Daniil Medvedev having won four of the previous five, a favourite emerges before a single ball has been struck.
Both men have been great at this tournament, Medvedev dropping only two sets so far and beating world number 14 Alexander Zverev on his way to the semi-final, with Frances Tiafoe triumphing over one of the tournament favourites, Cameron Norrie, in straight sets in his last match.
The two are well matched and set up what should be an exciting encounter in the Californian desert, though there are a number of variables that will decide this one; Medvedev’s limitless talent being one and Tiafoe’s home advantage the other.
Medvedev is the heavy favourite at 1.25 but we feel his odds are overly generous here as the calibre of opposition, combined with the home advantage that saw Tiafoe reach the semi-final of the US Open in September last year, could give the American the edge.
At 4.1 to triumph over his Russian counterpart, we really like the look of the long odds for Tiafoe, who has looked to be knocking on the door of a major final for some time.
Carlos Alcaraz v Jannik Sinner
A lot has been said about Carlos Alcaraz and his limitless potential. The same goes for his opposition here. Alcaraz and his opponent Jannik Sinner are shaping up to be the main tennis rivals of the next 15 years, with both players showcasing skill levels way beyond their ages and both making top performances in every Grand Slam in 2022. The future of tennis is in safe hands.
Their rivalry has seen blows traded in big matches already, the most crucial going the way of Alcaraz when he defeated the Italian in the 2022 US Open quarter-final before going on to win the tournament, becoming the youngest ever men’s number one in the process. Sinner’s most significant blow came when he defeated Alcaraz in the final at the Umag Open, so some would consider them to be on even terms and their 2:2 record highlights how close they are.
For now, Alcaraz has the upper hand and will likely be the more confident player going into the game with his recent results, backing up his claim for the world number one spot that he would steal from Novak Djokovic with a trophy at this tournament.
Alcaraz has beaten Jack Draper and most recently world number 10 Felix Auger-Aliassime in California and will certainly take some momentum with him into this match. Sinner on the other hand has beaten home favourite Taylor Fritz as well as Stan Wawrinka so both have had to overcome significant challenges.
In truth, this is a hard one to call but Alcaraz is our pick at 1.55, though Sinner’s odds of 2.52 could offer great returns for a bold punter.