Indian Wells: Tiafoe, Nishikori advance; Clijsters loses on return

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Frances Tiafoe (Photo: Twitter/BNP Paribas Open)
Frances Tiafoe (Photo: Twitter/BNP Paribas Open)

California [USA], October 8 (ANI): Unseeded players took centre stage on Thursday as main draw action got underway at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, California.

In the primetime match-up, Frances Tiafoe didn't disappoint the home crowd against the mercurial Benoit Paire, dispatching the Frenchman with ease and making use of his whole toolbox of shots. Tiafoe defeated Paire by 6-4, 6-4 in 1h 2min.

Tiafoe has now set up a mouthwatering all-American clash against 32nd seed Sebastian Korda, who is working his way back to the form that saw him surge up the ATP Rankings earlier this season to his current career-high of World No. 40.

Elsewhere, Kei Nishikori appeared in danger of suffering an opening loss in California, but the former World No. 4 rallied past Portugal's Joao Sousa 6-7(5), 6-3, 6-2 in two hours and 22 minutes to reach the second round.

Making her first appearance in ten years at the BNP Paribas Open, two-time champion Kim Clijsters fell at the first hurdle. Katerina Siniakova of the Czech Republic outlasted former World No 1 of Belgium, 6-1, 2-6, 6-2, in an hour and 36 minutes, to pick up her first singles win since the first round of the US Open.

By moving forward, Siniakova sets up a second-round meeting with another former World No.1 and multiple-Grand Slam champion, No.10 seed Angelique Kerber.

Earlier in the day, former Top 10 player Caroline Garcia will be American teenager Coco Gauff's first opponent in her debut at the BNP Paribas Open, after the Frenchwoman sealed a 5-7, 6-4, 6-0 victory over Belgian qualifier Kirsten Flipkens in Indian Wells. (ANI)

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