Hey guys, this is a fan story from Fran about Indian Wells 2016. Just like last years fan story it has some awesome photos. Enjoy!
I had high hopes for this year’s Indian Wells. I bought my tickets back in September and I had hoped this would be the year my son, Thomas, would get Federer’s autograph and I would get to watch Federer play live again. Alas, we will have to wait another year. When I heard about Federer’s knee surgery, I didn’t think he would be ready for Indian Wells and I was right. I tried not to be too disappointed, but I was. I knew there was a good chance he wouldn’t be playing the days we went even if he was playing. I just tried to focus on other players I enjoy and really wanted to see.
On Sunday, March 13, my husband and 2 kids went with me. I bought loge seats on the second level. It was by far the best weather I have ever seen at Indian Wells. It was partly cloudy all day and much cooler. I finally didn’t have to swelter under the hot sun! Like Sue, I dropped my camera but luckily I only damaged the UV filter and not the lens or camera. We watched Zverev beat Dimitrov pretty easily. I really like both players and it was exciting to see Zverev play so well. I had heard a lot of talk about this up-and-comer so I was interested to see him play. I was unhappy that Dimitrov lost again and the great promise he showed in the past was nowhere to be found.
I love taking pictures and I was fortunate enough to borrow a telephoto (100-400mm) lens from a friend. (Not the lens I dropped thankfully. I was super careful with this lens!) I am not a professional by any stretch but it was fun being asked if I was by a few spectators.
One of my favorite players is Kei Nishikori. We watched his match against Kukushkin. This was not the most exciting match but fun to watch Nishikori play up close.
Then, we wandered into one of the smaller stadiums. Kohlshreiber vs. Kudla was a complete blow out with the score 6-0 6-1. The crowd was really pulling for the American, but he couldn’t hit a winner or get a point to save his life!
The last match we watched was by far the best. I was expecting Djokovic to beat the Fratangelo easily. We couldn’t believe how hard the American was hitting the ball and kept winning point after point. After Fratangelo won the first set though, it was all Djokovic with the final score being 2-6 6-1 6-2.
On Tuesday, I took my son, Thomas. This was his sixth year attending this event. We had courtside seats, 5 rows from the front. We ate at the new Sports bar that opened this year at Indian Wells. As we were eating some pizza, Vasek Pospisil walked in with a video and still photographer along with a man that looked like a chef. I had seen on the menu earlier that 2 of the sandwiches were named after last year’s doubles winners – Jack Sock and Vasek Pospisil. They sat down at the table next to us and we watched as the chef interviewed him for a few minutes and he took a bite out of his signature sandwich. My son and I did not want to intrude by asking for an autograph or taking a picture. They were only there a few minutes but it was a thrill to see a player up close and relaxed. After lunch, we watched Nishikori beat Johnson pretty handily. When this match was over we decided to watch John Isner vs. Mannarino in stadium 2. We managed to find 2 seats and we settled in to watch the match. Unfortunately, there was no cloud cover on this day and we got the brunt of the sun. It was so hot! We couldn’t take more than a set so we left.
We got back into our great seats in stadium 1 and watched Nadal vs. Verdasco. I was very excited to see this match after the great match that Verdasco played in Australia. This match turned out to not be very competitive at all, with Nadal taking the first set easily 6-0. Then, Verdasco made it all the way into the tiebreaker in the second set. I was hoping for a 3rd set just to make it interesting, but Nadal won the match.
On Thursday, I took my daughter, Maddy, to Indian Wells. I think she more excited to eat sushi at Nobu then watch tennis. She loves sushi so much. We sat on the patio and had a delicious meal of salmon and albacore sushi and some California rolls.
We watched Cilic vs. Goffin. I didn’t think Goffin had much of a chance with Cilic’s size and big serve, but I was wrong. Goffin played surprisingly well, winning the first set in a tiebreaker. He then took the second set pretty easily 6-2.
Afterwards, we watched an entertaining doubles match. It was Jamie Murray/Bruno Soares vs. Feliciano Lopez/Marc Lopez. It went to 2 tiebreakers and then the match was decided in a super tiebreaker 10-8.
All in all, I thought this was a good Indian Wells tournament. It was definitely not as fun without Roger, but I know he will be back next year. Here are some shots I took over the last 2 years. I can’t write this post without including a photo or 2 of Roger! Counting the days until next year’s Indian Wells with Roger Federer!