Important as Novak Djokovic and Victoria Azarenka completing the Indian Wells-Miami double was, the chain of events at Crandon Park culminating in their wins was equally significant. As was notable one more facet. To begin win, the much-awaited come back of Roger Federer was delayed as the Swiss was forced to pull out of his tantalising opening round match against Juan Martin Del Potro because of gastroenteritis.
Almost on the heels of this, Rafael Nadal also pulled out of the tournament – mid-match in his second round match against Damir Dzumhur after being in discomfort because of the prevalent weather condition. As big a setback as Federer’s withdrawal was, Nadal pulling out of the event was huger considering that the Spaniard looked to have had a turnaround in his form in Indian Wells, where he’d reached the semi-finals in fine fashion.
In the whole scheme of things though, Federer and Nadal’s respective retirements were however only the tip of the ice-berg as seeds continued to topple and mid-match retirements continued to dot the tournament – both amongst men and women.
Andy Murray, Stan Wawrinka and women’s defending champion Serena Williams all found themselves being ousted without much fanfare alongside Venus Williams, Caroline Wozniacki and Petra Kvitova. But amongst these upsets there were also some surprising results that helped stabilise the brewing mayhem.
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