Indian Wells Masters: Lucky loser Nardi stuns world No 1 Djokovic to reach last 16

The world No 123 from Italy beats Djokovic 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 and will play American Tommy Paul, the No 17 seed, in the next round

Luca Nardi at Indian Wells 2024 Luca Nardi at Indian Wells 2024 Image Credit: Antoine Couvercelle / Panoramic
BNP Paribas Open •Third round • completed
See draw

Lucky loser Luca Nardi stunned world No 1 Novak Djokovic, of Serbia, in three sets to move into the last 16 of the BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden on Monday evening.

The Italian, who lost in the final qualifying round to Belgium’s David Goffin and only came through when one of the main draw players pulled out, won the first set 6-4 against Djokovic, who was playing in Indian Wells for the first time since 2019.

Djokovic looked set to restore the order as he took the second set 6-3 but the 20-year-old bounced back to take the decider by the same score and complete the 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 in two hours and 17 minutes.

With the win, the 123rd ranked Nardi becomes the lowest-ranked player to beat Djokovic at an ATP Masters 1000 or Grand Slam event since 2008.

I think that it’s just a miracle. I’m 20 years old guy, 100 or more (in the ATP rankings), I’m beating Novak. So crazy, crazy.

Nardi, who had won only three ATP Tour main draw matches prior to this week, will go on to face American Tommy Paul, the No 17 seed, for a spot in the quarter-finals. The young Italian was delighted after his win over the player who has been his idol wile growing up.

“I think that before this night no one knew me. I hope that the crowd enjoyed the game, I’m super happy with this one,” Nardi said during his on-court interview. “I don’t know man, I really don’t know [in response to how he kept his nerve). I think that it’s just a miracle. I’m 20 years old guy, 100 or more (in the ATP rankings), I’m beating Novak. So crazy, crazy. Watching Jannik winning all the matches is something that for sure pushed me to be better. I didn’t expect to win today but you know I always try to do my best in practice, and this happened, so I’m really happy.”

Ahead of his win today, the 20-year-old Italian defeated Chinese Zhizhen Zhang (6-3, 3-6, 6-3).

Djokovic, ranked No 1, won against Australian Aleksandar Vukic (6-2, 5-7, 6-3) in the previous round of the Indian Wells Masters.

Indian Wells Masters 1000, other third-round matches (Indian Wells Tennis Garden, hard, USD 9.495.555):

  • Grigor Dimitrov (13) beat Adrian Mannarino (21): 6-3, 6-3
  • Taylor Fritz (12) beat Sebastian Baez (19): 6-2, 6-2
  • Casper Ruud (9) beat Arthur Fils: 6-2, 6-4
  • Tommy Paul beat Ugo Humbert (14): 6-4, 6-4
  • Gael Monfils beat Cameron Norrie (28): 6-7 (5), 7-6 (5), 6-3
  • Holger Rune (7) beat Lorenzo Musetti (26): 6-2, 7-6 (5)
  • Ben Shelton (16) beat Francisco Cerundolo (22): 7-6 (5), 3-6, 7-6 (5)
  • Alexander Zverev (6) beat Tallon Griekspoor (27): 7-6 (7), 6-3
  • Jiri Lehecka (32) beat Andrey Rublev (5): 6-4, 6-4
  • Jannik Sinner (3) beat Jan-Lennard Struff (25): 6-3, 6-4
  • Carlos Alcaraz (2) beat Felix Auger-Aliassime (31): 6-2, 6-3
  • Alex De Minaur (10) beat Alexander Bublik (20): 7-5, 6-0
  • Stefanos Tsitsipas (11) beat Frances Tiafoe (18): 6-3, 6-3
  • Fabian Marozsan beat Thiago Seyboth Wild (Q): 6-2, 6-2
  • Daniil Medvedev vs. Sebastian Korda

People in this post

Your comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *