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Federer moves on, Stephens loses again at Indian Wells

13 March 2018

I just completely lost rhythm, everything. Just struggled also a little bit with (my) health the last couple of weeks.

The Swiss legend, who is targeting a record sixth title at Indian Wells, was in control from the off.

He said it felt like the "first match I ever played on the tour".

Thiem has already won a tour-leading 17 matches this season, but he had to work hard to beat 19-year-old Tsitsipas, who reached the quarter-finals in Dubai last week and is ranked 71st in the world. He pulled it back in the second set, but was blown away by the Japanese youngster in the decider. I was able to stay pretty tough, so I'm pretty proud of that.

Djokovic shut down his season after Wimbledon in 2017 and despite not being at his best, made a decision to play at this year's Australian Open where he was ousted by South Korea's Hyeon Chung in the fourth round.

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While Djokovic was exiting the event, top-seeded Roger Federer finally completed his entrance.

In other men's matches, Argentine Juan Martin del Potro beat Australian teenager Alex de Minaur 6-2 6-1 and set up a third-round showdown with Spaniard David Ferrer, who defeated Tennys Sandgren of the U.S. 6-2 7-6 (7/3).

The match was tied 2-2 in the second set when it was halted Saturday.

"I was feeling like he was not loving my slice and I was also mixing in dropshots", said Federer who extended his ideal record this season to 14-0. "When you go from night to day, (normally you are) playing a different opponent, so naturally, it's all a change". It was actually quite interesting. The surface doesn't react so much; the ball doesn't travel so fast. "And even though you don't have pain, you are still thinking about it, because it has been something that I have been feeling and dragging for over two years", Djokovic said.

Federer improved to 65-5 since returning from a left knee injury a year ago with his third-round victory in a rare day match Monday.

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Second-seeded Marin Cilic of Croatia and eighth-seeded American Jack Sock both earned second-round wins in straight sets.

Other seeded players who lost were ninth-seeded Lucas Pouille, who fell 6-4, 6-4 to Yuki Bhambri; 14th-seeded Diego Schwartzman, 7-5, 6-4 to Marcos Baghdatis; 21st-seeded Kyle Edmund, 6-4, 6-4 to Dudi Sela; and No. 24 seed Giles Muller, 6-3, 7-5 to Pierre-Hugues Herbert.

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Federer moves on, Stephens loses again at Indian Wells