Milos Raonic defeats Andy Murray at Indian Wells
Canadian's first win over top-10 player since September
Canada's Milos Raonic used his big serve to earn a 4-6, 7-5, 6-3 victory over Andy Murray in the fourth round of the BNP Paribas Open on Wednesday.
Raonic fired 15 aces and held triple match point when he ripped a crosscourt forehand to close out the win after breaking Murray three times in the final set.
"The third set was just a bad, bad set of tennis," said Murray, who broke Raonic to lead 2-1 before losing five of the final six games.
Murray, ranked sixth in the world, struggled in all three of his matches at Indian Wells. He rallied to beat Lukas Rosol and Jiri Vesely, but couldn't overcome Raonic's power.
"He obviously wins a lot of free points with his serve," Murray said. "So over the course of the set, if you give up enough unforced errors on basic shots, then with the amount of free points he gets on his serve, that's going to add up to a negative result."
Raonic blew his first match point when he returned Murray's serve long. Murray held to trail 5-3, but Raonic held at love to close out the match. He hit 42 winners to 22 for Murray.
"I just tried to impose myself and tried to take care and control of the centre of the court as much as I could," Raonic said. "With somebody like him that can find his way out of so many difficult situations and points, it's important sort of take that time away."
Playing his first tournament since injuring his left ankle at the Australian Open in January, Raonic hadn't beaten someone in the top 10 since defeating then-No. 6 Tomas Berdych in the Bangkok final in September.
Raonic, a 23-year-old ranked 11th in the world, advanced to the quarterfinals against Alexandr Dolgopolov of Ukraine, who beat Fabio Fognini of Italy, 6-2, 6-4.
Anderson ousts Wawrinka
Kevin Anderson upset Australian Open champion Stan Wawrinka 7-6 (1), 4-6, 6-1 in fourth-round action joining Raonic in sending home two top-10 players.
Two-time tournament winner Novak Djokovic played a late match.
Anderson ended Wawrinka's 13-match winning streak that included his first Grand Slam title in January. Wawrinka didn't face a break point in his first two matches, but he got broken in his first service game against the 6-foot-8 Anderson, who had 11 aces and connected on 64 per cent of his first serves.
"I was complaining a lot about my serve, about the way I was playing, and with that, I don't deserve to win matches," Wawrinka said. "I should have been more positive with myself, just trying to find solution because it was still a close match."
After losing the first set tiebreaker, Wawrinka left the court for nearly eight minutes to have his back worked on. He returned and broke Anderson twice in taking the second set to even the match.
"It's just tightness," he said, insisting he wasn't injured. "I was a little bit nervous and tight and tired."
Anderson earned all four breaks in the third in completing his 150th career match win on the ATP Tour.
"Game plan is just to get as many first serves back as possible just to give myself the best look in his serve games throughout the match," he said.
Anderson advanced to the quarter-finals against four-time tournament champion Roger Federer, who beat 11th-seeded Tommy Haas 6-4, 6-4.
Ernests Gulbis beat Roberto Bautista Agut 7-6 (7), 4-6, 6-2 to reach the quarter-finals. He'll play John Isner, the lone remaining American man who beat Fernando Verdasco, 7-6 (3), 3-6, 6-3.
On the women's side, sixth-seeded Simona Halep defeated Australian qualifier Casey Dellacqua 6-2, 6-2 to earn a berth in the semifinals.
With files from The Associated Press