WTA Indian Wells: Coco Vandeweghe brushes aside Kaia Kanepi in straight sets

Coco Vandeweghe put up a clinical serving display to ease past the dangerous and unseeded Kaia Kanepi in straight sets, securing herself a spot in the third round of the BNP Paribas Open.

Coco Vandeweghe
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Kaia Kanepi

Coco Vandeweghe looked in great form during her second-round win at the 2018 BNP Paribas Open after ousting the dangerous and giant-killing Kaia Kanepi in straight sets, setting up an interesting match-up against Maria Sakkari in the third round on Sunday.

With her serve not being broken throughout the encounter, Vandeweghe clinched the straightforward victory in just an hour and 25-minutes of play, with a decent chance to reach the quarterfinals. Blasting 25 winners and just 17 errors, the American looked unstoppable while Kanepi seemed to be bothered by a leg injury which saw her having a huge amount of strapping.

Vandeweghe demolishes Kanepi in 20 minutes

Kanepi, whose extreme strapping on her left leg looked worrying at the start of the match, made a couple of errors and her slow start proved costly as Vandeweghe broke serve immediately in the opening game. In her first appearance since helping the USA to a commanding victory over the Netherlands in Fed Cup action, Vandeweghe’s serve looked at the top of the world, and the massive power on them was just too good for Kanepi to handle with the American holding serve to 15, and that was the only point she lost on serve throughout the set after misjudging a shot.

Winning just seven points throughout the first set, it was a total demolition work done by Vandeweghe as the big-serving American was hitting winner after winner while Kanepi failed to find her groove. After just a mere 21 minutes, Vandeweghe zoomed past and sealed the one-sided first set 6-0 after hitting three consecutive aces to complete the job. This set was flawless from Vandeweghe, who threw in five aces and hit 10 winners without making a single error.

Coco Vandeweghe reaches out for a backhand return | Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images North America
Coco Vandeweghe reaches out for a backhand return | Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images North America

Vandeweghe edges the competitive second set

Riding on her momentum and high in confidence, Vandeweghe looked to extend her streak after going up 0-30 in the first game of the second set but this time Kanepi was able to put up a tough fight with a forehand winner finally getting her on board. Inconsistencies started to bother Vandeweghe, who faced trouble in her opening two service games as she had to save a total of three break points.

It was one-way traffic for the servers until the crucial 11th game where Kanepi had to serve. Facing three break points and knowing that a break would allow Vandeweghe to serve out the match, the pressure was immense. However, the Estonian was able to maintain her composure and send in several strong serves on those decisive points, ultimately holding serve for 6-5.

Coco Vandeweghe acknowledges the supportive crowd after the match | Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images North America
Coco Vandeweghe acknowledges the supportive crowd after the match | Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images North America

A tiebreak soon ensued, and although Kanepi recovered from a 2-5 deficit, it was just too late as Vandeweghe clinched the straight-sets victory after an hour and 25 minutes with a backhand error coming from Kanepi on match point.