Djokovic Masters Raonic, Azarenka Beats Williams In Indian Wells

INDIAN WELLS, March 21, 2016

Novak Djokovic captures a record fifth BNP Paribas Open title, winning Sunday’s final in Indian Wells against Milos Raonic 6-2, 6-0.

The world number one won all four previous meetings between the two and dominated the encounter in the desert right from the beginning. Djokovic didn’t face a break point and converted five of his own to prevail in one hour and 17 minutes to lift his 27th ATP Masters trophy. The victory sees the Serb move into a tie with Rafael Nadal for most ATP World Tour Masters 1000 crowns.

“I’m just glad to be able to raise the level of my game as the tournament progresses, and that’s something that I have been doing in the last two years particularly on the big events,” Djokovic told.

“I have been managing to win most of the big matches against Top 10 players. Obviously I have a certain routine and certain preparation for these big matches that works for me.”

Raonic said: “There are a lot of positives to take away. Right now it’s very disappointing, but at the end of the day, until two weeks ago I didn’t do any side-to-side movement and I didn’t play any points.

“To be here playing in the final of one of the most important tournaments in our year is great progress. I look to sort of keep that going forward, try to be healthy and try to get better every day.”

In the women’s final earlier the day, Victoria Azarenka beat top-seed Serena Williams 6-4, 6-4 in one hour and 28 minutes. The 26-year-old from Belarus won 86% of her first service points, and held off an impressive fightback from the 21-time Grand Slam champion – who won four games in a row with two chances to level the second set from 1-5 down – to win her second Indian Wells title, and first Premier Mandatory event since the 2012 China Open.

“I wanted to first address a personal thank you to Serena. I know how emotional it was for you to be back here and you truly inspired so many people out there to see the type of committment you have to the game. It’s truly inspriing,” Azarenka said.

“Thank you for that from the bottom of my heart. You are an amazing competitor who changed the game.

“If it wasn’t for you and how hard you work and seeing you play so well, I wouldn’t be as motivated to come back and work so hard. Thank you on behalf of the sport.”