Sharapova and Bouchard win, Wozniacki exits

Tue Mar 17, 2015 12:58am EDT
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By Mark Lamport-Stokes

INDIAN WELLS, California (Reuters) - Caroline Wozniacki became the biggest name to fall at the BNP Paribas Open on Monday when the fourth seed was ousted 6-4 6-4 by Swiss teen Belinda Bencic on Monday.

Second seed Maria Sharapova won an absorbing baseline battle with long-time rival Victoria Azarenka 6-4 6-3 in just under two hours while sixth-seed Eugenie Bouchard demolished American CoCo Vandeweghe 6-3 6-2.

Wozniacki, champion at Indian Wells in 2011, had overwhelmed Bencic 6-0 6-0 in their only previous meeting in Istanbul last year but it was a very different story at the California desert venue as the Dane struggled for consistency.

"Honestly, it was two completely different matches," Wozniacki said after being broken twice in the opening set and once in the second at a sun-bathed Indian Wells Tennis Garden.

"I went out there today and I didn't play well at all.

"She was steady. She took the ball early as normal, and she served pretty decently, but I didn't put three balls in play today. She only had to put balls back in my court."

Bencic, who celebrated her 18th birthday last week, was delighted to clinch her first victory over a top-five player.

"In Istanbul I had maybe too much respect and I was afraid, nervous," said the Swiss, who gave notice of her potential by reaching last year's U.S. Open quarter-finals.   Continued...

Mar 16, 2015; Indian Wells, CA, USA;  Maria Sharapova (RUS) during her match against Victoria Azarenka (BLR) at the BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports