Fixture: (1) Carlos Alcaraz vs (5) Daniil Medvedev
Date: Sunday, March 19, 2023
Tournament: BNP Paribas Open
Venue: Indian Wells, California, USA
Category: ATP Masters 1000
Surface: Outdoor hardcourt
Prize money: $8,800,000
Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel | UK - Amazon Prime Video
Carlos Alcaraz vs Daniil Medvedev preview
Top seed Carlos Alcaraz will take on fifth seed Daniil Medvedev on Sunday (March 19) for the Indian Wells title and a return to World No. 1.
The second-ranked Alcaraz has been on a roll in the Californian desert, racking up his fifth straight-set win by beating his good friend Jannik Sinner. In the process, the teenager reached his third final in as many tournaments this season. Having won the Argentina Open and lost the Rio de Janeiro final, the Spaniard is now 13-1 in 2023.
In a tight first set, Alcaraz saved a set point before taking the opener in a tiebreak. Unlike their previous meeting in the US Open quarterfinals - which went the distance - Sinner couldn't muster a response in the second as the Spaniard reached his first Indian Wells final, winning 7-6(4), 6-3. A title triumph will return Alcaraz to the top of the rankings.
Meanwhile, World No. 6 Medvedev extended his winning streak to 19 matches by seeing off Frances Tiafoe in straight sets (7-5, 7-6(4)) in the other semifinal. The victory was anything but straightforward, though, as the 27-year-old needed eight match points to reach his fourth straight tournament final and first at Indian Wells.
The former World No. 1 has not lost since losing at the Australian Open - racking up titles at Rotterdam, Doha and Dubai - to improve to a tour-best 24-2 in 2023.
Carlos Alcaraz vs Daniil Medvedev head-to-head
Alcaraz lost his only previous meeting to Medvedev in straight sets in the second round at Wimbledon two years ago, so his H2H against the Russian is 0-1.
Carlos Alcaraz vs Daniil Medvedev odds
(All odds as per BetMGM)
Carlos Alcaraz vs Daniil Medvedev prediction
Alcaraz and Medvedev are two of the hottest players on tour at the moment, so it's apt that they take on each other for the year's first Masters 1000 title.
Both players are quintessential baseliners but possess powerful games - especially on hardcourt. Alcaraz and Medvedev serve big, hit powerful groundstrokes and move well, especially the latter, considering he's 6' 6". The Russian is also one of the best returners in the game.
However, Alcaraz gets a slight edge because of his elite athleticism and ability to hit winners from seemingly impossible angles. He's a much better player since meeting Medvedev at Wimbledon two years ago - having won multiple Grand Slam and Masters 1000 titles.
Alcaraz looked solid on serve in the semis - six aces and saving 1/2 break points - while Medvedev produced nine aces and saved 1/3 break points. With a return to No. 1 beckoning, the fresher Alcaraz should take this one.
Pick: Alcaraz in straight sets