The Indian Wells Masters kicks off the 2018 ATP Masters 1000 series. A host of players enter this prestigious tournament in great form, while others are struggling. Here is a look at some of those stars.
5: Kevin Anderson
The big hitting South African is 11-3 on the season and took the title in New York at the new ATP 250 tournament in the Big Apple. Anderson had a strong 2017 and at 31 he’s backed that up already in 2018. Anderson looks cued up to make up a deep run, perhaps all the way to the semis against Federer.
4: Lucas Pouille
Pouille is 11-4 on the season and should crack the top 10 after Indian Wells. The Frenchman is another potential semifinalist and has shown he should be here to stay as a top player on the ATP tour. Pouille has reached at least the finals in three of his last four tournaments.
3: Roberto Bautista Agut
RBA is 10-3 on the year and comes off the biggest title of his career at the 500 series stop in Dubai. RBA now has two ATP titles on the season and is hoping for a much bigger showing at the Masters level.
2: Juan Martin Del Potro
Del Potro is back in the top 10 and 11-3 on the season with a title and a final. Now a veteran on tour, Del Potro still draws a big crowd and has fans wherever he goes. Indian Wells could herald his biggest result since returning from numerous injuries.
1: Roger Federer
Federer is 12-0 on the season and is the favorite to defend his Indian Wells title from last year. The Swiss Maestro continues to age like a fine wine and it’s unlikely anyone will derail him in the first Masters 1000 of the year.
5: Sam Querrey
Besides reaching the final in New York Querrey hasn’t won consecutive matches at any tournaments this season. Querrey had a solid season in 2016 but he appears to have returned to mediocre performances in 2018.
4: Pablo Carreno Busta
PCB has struggled since the Australian Open, winning just one match over the past couple of months. Those matches were on clay, but all the same the Spaniard does not appear to be in good form and should struggle on the return to hard courts.
3: John Isner
Isner has won just one match in 2018, at 32 he could be in for a permanent decline in terms of performance. North American hard courts are usually his strength, but not right now. It would be a surprise to see Isner lasting very long in Indian Wells.
2: Milos Raonic
Raonic is 1-3 on the season, it’s been a slow return from injury for the formerly ace Canadian. Raonic could catch form at any time but he’s entering IW with ice cold form.
1: Jack Sock
Sock is yet another struggling American playing on home soil this week. After a solid 2016 and 2017, Sock is 1-4 on the season and is playing well below expectations. Look for Sock to continue to struggle in California.