Here’s Why Milos Raonic Is An Indian Wells Threat

Editor’s Note: Milos Raonic advanced to the BNP Paribas Open semi-finals on Thursday, defeating lucky loser Miomir Kecmanovic 6-3, 6-4. It is the Canadian’s fourth consecutive trip to the last four in Indian Wells (he did not compete in 2017). This story has been updated to reflect his 2019 run at the BNP Paribas Open thus far.

It’s no surprise that the ‘Big Four’ of Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray hold the four best hard-court records among active players at ATP Masters 1000 events. The quartet has also captured 13 of the past 15 titles at the BNP Paribas Open, which begins this week at Indian Wells.

The FedEx ATP Performance Zone shows the fifth player on the list is former World No. 3 Milos Raonic. The 28-year-old Canadian, currently ranked No. 14, has won 67.5 per cent of his Masters 1000 matches on hard courts. That ranks 11th overall among all players who have played 20 or more matches at this level. The eight-time ATP Tour champion has performed especially well at Indian Wells.

Raonic has advanced to the semi-finals or better on four consecutive showings in the desert. At the year’s first Masters 1000 event he holds a 23-7 record, equating to a 76.7 winning percentage.

Best Hard-Court Masters 1000 Records (Active Players)

 Player  Record  Winning Percentage
 1. Novak Djokovic  228-45  83.5%
 2. Roger Federer  251-63  80.0%
 3. Rafael Nadal  191-59  76.4%
 4. Andy Murray  161-51  75.9%
 5. Milos Raonic  79-38  67.5%

“I just have a personal calm at this event maybe compared to others. It’s a little bit quieter here. It’s easier to be around the tennis. You don’t have to fight through traffic to get here. You get here with ease, so I think that gives me a personal calm,” Raonic said at Indian Wells last year. “I think the conditions help. Obviously this year it’s quite a bit slower than it has been in the past, but the ball still moves through the air, even though the court slows it down a bit, but it’s always bounced high. So I think there have been a lot of things that have contributed to me feeling comfortable here.”

Raonic also owns 14 wins at Miami and Cincinnati, Masters 1000 events that are also played on hard courts. Overall, Raonic has advanced to the quarter-finals or better at hard-court tournaments at this level 17 times. 

The big-serving right-hander has made three Masters 1000 finals: 2013 Canada, 2014 Paris and 2016 Indian Wells. Fittingly, all of those efforts came on hard courts.

‘Big Three’ & American Legends Lead The Pack Overall
Djokovic and Federer, who have won 83.5 per cent and 80 per cent of their Masters 1000 hard-court matches, respectively, are Nos. 1 and 2 in the category for all players, not just those who are active. Two American former No. 1s Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras are right behind.

Agassi, who triumphed at Indian Wells in 2001, won 77.8 per cent of his Masters 1000 hard-court matches, while two-time champion Pete Sampras was victorious 77.2 per cent of the time. Nadal rounds out the Top 5 at 76.4 per cent.

Best Hard-Court Masters 1000 Records (Overall)

 Player  Record  Winning Percentage
 1. Novak Djokovic  228-45  83.5%
 2. Roger Federer  251-63  80.0%
 3. Andre Agassi  168-48  77.8%
 4. Pete Sampras  125-37  77.2%
 5. Rafael Nadal  191-59  76.4%

Here’s Why Milos Raonic Is An Indian Wells Threat

Editor’s Note: Milos Raonic advanced to the BNP Paribas Open semi-finals on Thursday, defeating lucky loser Miomir Kecmanovic 6-3, 6-4. It is the Canadian’s fourth consecutive trip to the last four in Indian Wells (he did not compete in 2017). This story has been updated to reflect his 2019 run at the BNP Paribas Open thus far.

It’s no surprise that the ‘Big Four’ of Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray hold the four best hard-court records among active players at ATP Masters 1000 events. The quartet has also captured 13 of the past 15 titles at the BNP Paribas Open, which begins this week at Indian Wells.

The FedEx ATP Performance Zone shows the fifth player on the list is former World No. 3 Milos Raonic. The 28-year-old Canadian, currently ranked No. 14, has won 67.5 per cent of his Masters 1000 matches on hard courts. That ranks 11th overall among all players who have played 20 or more matches at this level. The eight-time ATP Tour champion has performed especially well at Indian Wells.

Raonic has advanced to the semi-finals or better on four consecutive showings in the desert. At the year’s first Masters 1000 event he holds a 23-7 record, equating to a 76.7 winning percentage.

Best Hard-Court Masters 1000 Records (Active Players)

 Player  Record  Winning Percentage
 1. Novak Djokovic  228-45  83.5%
 2. Roger Federer  251-63  80.0%
 3. Rafael Nadal  191-59  76.4%
 4. Andy Murray  161-51  75.9%
 5. Milos Raonic  79-38  67.5%

“I just have a personal calm at this event maybe compared to others. It’s a little bit quieter here. It’s easier to be around the tennis. You don’t have to fight through traffic to get here. You get here with ease, so I think that gives me a personal calm,” Raonic said at Indian Wells last year. “I think the conditions help. Obviously this year it’s quite a bit slower than it has been in the past, but the ball still moves through the air, even though the court slows it down a bit, but it’s always bounced high. So I think there have been a lot of things that have contributed to me feeling comfortable here.”

Raonic also owns 14 wins at Miami and Cincinnati, Masters 1000 events that are also played on hard courts. Overall, Raonic has advanced to the quarter-finals or better at hard-court tournaments at this level 17 times. 

The big-serving right-hander has made three Masters 1000 finals: 2013 Canada, 2014 Paris and 2016 Indian Wells. Fittingly, all of those efforts came on hard courts.

‘Big Three’ & American Legends Lead The Pack Overall
Djokovic and Federer, who have won 83.5 per cent and 80 per cent of their Masters 1000 hard-court matches, respectively, are Nos. 1 and 2 in the category for all players, not just those who are active. Two American former No. 1s Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras are right behind.

Agassi, who triumphed at Indian Wells in 2001, won 77.8 per cent of his Masters 1000 hard-court matches, while two-time champion Pete Sampras was victorious 77.2 per cent of the time. Nadal rounds out the Top 5 at 76.4 per cent.

Best Hard-Court Masters 1000 Records (Overall)

 Player  Record  Winning Percentage
 1. Novak Djokovic  228-45  83.5%
 2. Roger Federer  251-63  80.0%
 3. Andre Agassi  168-48  77.8%
 4. Pete Sampras  125-37  77.2%
 5. Rafael Nadal  191-59  76.4%

Raonic Clinical To Reach Indian Wells SF

Milos Raonic was at his efficient best on Thursday afternoon, beating Serbian lucky loser Miomir Kecmanovic 6-3, 6-4 to reach his fourth BNP Paribas Open semi-final in Indian Wells.

The Canadian, who made the 2016 final (l. to Djokovic), didn’t have his best serving day – making only 55 per cent of his first serves – but he made the ones he landed count, winning almost 90 per cent (30/34) of his rocket first offerings.

“In a few key moments my serve really helped me out,” Raonic said. “I knew it was going to be tough. He’s won his last three matches against good players… So I knew he had nothing to lose, and I had to be really disciplined with myself, and I’m happy I was able to follow through.”

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Kecmanovic, playing in his first tour-level quarter-final, held his own for much of the his first tour-level quarter-final, stretching Raonic to the corners to start the point and opening up the court. But the 19-year-old Serbian, who had one tour-level win before Indian Wells, couldn’t convert any of his three break points, including two at 3-4 in the second set.

I think the conditions are good for me, especially when the sun’s out,” said Raonic about his Indian Wells success. “The court heats up a little bit. There is a good amount of jump on the court. This year it’s a little bit slower than the previous years, but it allows me to take a few more swipes at a few more shots, and I can do different things with my serve that I need to get ahead in the point.”

The 28-year-old will meet Gael Monfils or Dominic Thiem for a place in the ATP Masters 1000 final. The 6’5” Canadian has reached three Masters 1000 finals – 2013 Canada, 2014 Paris, 2016 Indian Wells – but hasn’t won a tour-level title in more than three years (January 2016, Brisbane). His maiden Masters 1000 title would be one of his best accomplishments to date.

“It would be there, I believe, parallel to the [2016] Wimbledon final, if not higher, just because it’s going through a week amongst the best players in the world,” Raonic said. “It’s not easy to do, especially not the ones at the beginning of the year, these two [Indian Wells and Miami], because guys have a lot of time. Nobody is really rushing here. Guys can bring their best tennis because it’s an extended tournament. So it’s tough to do it here.”

Raonic Clinical To Reach Indian Wells SF

Milos Raonic was at his efficient best on Thursday afternoon, beating Serbian lucky loser Miomir Kecmanovic 6-3, 6-4 to reach his fourth BNP Paribas Open semi-final in Indian Wells.

The Canadian, who made the 2016 final (l. to Djokovic), didn’t have his best serving day – making only 55 per cent of his first serves – but he made the ones he landed count, winning almost 90 per cent (30/34) of his rocket first offerings.

“In a few key moments my serve really helped me out,” Raonic said. “I knew it was going to be tough. He’s won his last three matches against good players… So I knew he had nothing to lose, and I had to be really disciplined with myself, and I’m happy I was able to follow through.”

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Kecmanovic, playing in his first tour-level quarter-final, held his own for much of the his first tour-level quarter-final, stretching Raonic to the corners to start the point and opening up the court. But the 19-year-old Serbian, who had one tour-level win before Indian Wells, couldn’t convert any of his three break points, including two at 3-4 in the second set.

I think the conditions are good for me, especially when the sun’s out,” said Raonic about his Indian Wells success. “The court heats up a little bit. There is a good amount of jump on the court. This year it’s a little bit slower than the previous years, but it allows me to take a few more swipes at a few more shots, and I can do different things with my serve that I need to get ahead in the point.”

The 28-year-old will meet Gael Monfils or Dominic Thiem for a place in the ATP Masters 1000 final. The 6’5” Canadian has reached three Masters 1000 finals – 2013 Canada, 2014 Paris, 2016 Indian Wells – but hasn’t won a tour-level title in more than three years (January 2016, Brisbane). His maiden Masters 1000 title would be one of his best accomplishments to date.

“It would be there, I believe, parallel to the [2016] Wimbledon final, if not higher, just because it’s going through a week amongst the best players in the world,” Raonic said. “It’s not easy to do, especially not the ones at the beginning of the year, these two [Indian Wells and Miami], because guys have a lot of time. Nobody is really rushing here. Guys can bring their best tennis because it’s an extended tournament. So it’s tough to do it here.”