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The BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells is far from over, but 16-year-old American Amanda Anisimova has been the story of the tournament so far.
Playing in her first-ever main-draw match at a WTA event, Anisimova defeated Pauline Parmentier in the first round of the tournament. She then faced world No. 23 Anastasia Pavyluchenkova, who she was able to beat 6-4, 6-1 in only an hour and three minutes.
Anisimova’s tournament would have already been considered a success if it ended after that win, but the feisty youngster wasn’t done yet.
Anisimova’s next match was against world No. 9 Petra Kvitova, who came into the meeting on a 14-match win streak. The American’s odds of winning that one? Slim. But Anisimova brought her best stuff on Sunday.
The world No. 149 crushed Kvitova, winning 6-2, 6-4 in an hour and 11 minutes. The tennis world was stunned by the result, and so was Anisimova.
“She’s an amazing player I’m pretty sure she was on a 14-match streak so she was playing really well,” she said. “I was just trying to stay focused but a the same time I was thinking, Oh my god.”
Anisimova visits the Tennis Channel set:
Her next match could be even tougher, though. The American is set to take on world No. 5 Karolina Pliskova on Tuesday. The 25-year-old is off to a solid start at Indian Wells, where she has already beaten Irina-Camelia Begu and world No. 33 Shuai Zhang.
Pliskova is 10-4 on the year and with her power is a threat to make a deep run this week. After a quarterfinal exit at the Australian Open, Pliskova is hoping to add a title in a big event. And despite having to face this year’s Cinderella story, she has to be feeling pretty good about her draw.
The most important thing for Pliskova to do on Tuesday is manage her emotions. The crowd at Indian Wells will be in Anisimova’s corner in a big way, so Pliskova can’t afford to get frustrated out there. If she can keep herself in check, and serve the way she’s capable of, she should be able to advance.
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