Looking back on South American tennis at Indian Wells

The US used to be the world men’s tennis power when chess players reaped a lot of success at the Grand Slam and Masters 1,000 tournaments, including Indian Wells.

On March 5, 1990, the first Masters in history took place at Indian Wells in the United States. This is also the period to witness the dominance of the flag of tennis when they have 7 male tennis players in the top 10 of the world.

From 1991 to 1997, the Indian Wells men’s singles championship never came out of the United States because of the excellence of names like Jim Courier, Michael Chang or Pete Sampras. Specifically, in 1991, Jim Courier defeated Guy Forget in the final considered to be the best in Indian Wells history.

Meanwhile, Michael Chang won the championship in 1992, 1996 and 1997 when he lost just one set in those three finals. And Pete Sampras ascended the throne at Indian Wells for two consecutive years 1994 and 1995, after successively surpassing Petr Korda and the outrageous rival Andre Agassi.

However, the dominance of South American tennis here also did not last. Between 1998 and 2000, no American player was allowed to play the men’s singles final at Indian Wells. It was not until 2001 that the trophy stayed with the United States after Andre Agassi defeated Pete Sampras 7-6, 7-5, 6-1 in the final (before 2007, matches in the Masters Series took place according to the Final 5 set wins 3).

Since 2001, although the generation of players born in the late 1970s and early 80s are all talented, none of them ascended the throne in the men’s singles. James Blake lost to Roger Federer in the 2006 final. Two years later, Novak Djokovic overtook Mardy Fish and in 2010 Andy Roddick put the racket behind after two checks against Ivan Ljubicic.

Since 2010, South American tennis has continued to go down and the host country players have not achieved good results in the men’s singles. The most prominent name is probably John Isner when in 2012, he passed Novak Djokovic to participate in the final. However, in the final match, Isner proved too immature in front of the express train Roger Federer.

At the 2016 Indian Wells Masters, the highest ranked American tennis player was the No. 11 seed John Isner. Certainly it will be difficult for the host country players to surprise when the tournament has the presence of many big names like Novak Djokovic or Andy Murray but it is still too early to say anything.