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Del Potro ends Federer's perfect record with an epic fightback

By Steve Hughes

Juan Martin Del Potro saved two match points en route to victory over Roger Federer at Indian Wells, ending the Swiss' perfect record in 2018 and clinching his first ATP Masters title at the BNP Paribas Open.

The Argentinian wasted a match point of his own in the second set and appeared on the verge of defeat when Federer served for the match at 5-4 and 40-15 in the third.

But Del Potro stormed back to force another tie-break which he breezed through 7-2 to claim a memorable 6-4 6-7 (8/10) 7-6 (7/2) triumph.

Meanwhile, Naomi Osaka claimed the first WTA Tour title of her career with victory over Russia's Daria Kasatkina in the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells.

The Japanese 20-year-old capped a dream run by overcoming her opponent 6-3 6-2 to become the first unseeded champion at the event since Kim Clijsters in 2005.

Osaka struggled to assert herself in the early stages against world number 19 Kasatkina, dropping her opening service game of the match with a succession of forehand errors.

It would prove the only break of the match for Kasatkina, who was broken twice herself as Osaka settled into her stride to take the first set.

And, with the biggest win of her career looming, Osaka showed admirable poise to ease through the first set without facing a break point on her own serve.

Belfast Telegraph


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