Indian Wells Masters: Paula Badosa becomes first Spaniard to win at Indian Wells, denies Victoria Azarenka in an epic three-hour thriller

Indian Wells Masters: Paula Badosa becomes first Spaniard to win at Indian Wells, denies Victoria Azarenka in an epic three-hour thriller
Indian Wells Masters: Paula Badosa becomes first Spaniard to win at Indian Wells, denies Victoria Azarenka in an epic three-hour thriller

Indian Wells Masters Final- Paula Badosa wins Indian Wells title: Paula Badosa survived a stiff challenge from Victoria Azarenka to produce a gutsy 7-6(5) 2-6 7-6(2) win in the Indian Wells championship match on Sunday.

Indian Wells Masters Final: Paula Badosa becomes first Spaniard to win at Indian Wells, denies Victoria Azarenka in an epic three-hour thriller

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In the first meeting between the two players, Badosa denied former World No.1 Azarenka what would have been her record-breaking third BNP Paribas Open title. Instead, it was the Spaniard who claimed the second WTA singles title of her season and her career.

Indian Wells Masters Final- Paula Badosa wins Indian Wells title: The intense 3-hour and 4-minute match is this year’s longest WTA singles final. It caps off a career-best week for Badosa, who defeated four Top 20 players in a row en route to the championship match, where she beat two-time titlist Azarenka to improve to 2-0 in WTA singles finals.

Paula Badosa beat Victoria Azarenka
Paula Badosa beat Victoria Azarenka

Fast facts: Badosa is 6-0 in Indian Wells main-draw matches, storming to the title in her main-draw debut. She follows in the footsteps of the previous BNP Paribas Open champion, Bianca Andreescu, who also won the 2019 title in her tournament debut.

Indian Wells Masters: Paula Badosa becomes first Spaniard to win at Indian Wells, denies Victoria Azarenka in an epic three-hour thriller

Surprisingly, Badosa is also the first Spaniard to take home the Indian Wells title. Former World No.2 Conchita Martinez came closest, with her runner-up showings in 1992 (lost to Monica Seles) and 1996 (lost to Stefanie Graf). Former World No.1 players Arantxa Sanchez Vicario and Garbiñe Muguruza have never made the final here.

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With the victory, Badosa halves her career-high ranking. She is currently one spot off of her highest placement of World No.26, but on Monday, she is projected to rise to a new high of World No.13 in the newest rankings.

Indian Wells Masters- Paula Badosa beat Victoria Azarenka: 1000 ranking points for winning the title also suddenly puts Badosa into contention for a spot at the Akron WTA Finals in Guadalajara. Badosa will slide into the No.8 position in the Porsche Race to the WTA Finals, so becoming one of the eight qualified players to contest the year-ending event is a distinct possibility with two weeks left before that tournament kicks off.

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