Bianca Andreescu Becomes Part of Annual Indian Wells Tradition Ahead of Title Defense at BNP Paribas Open 2021

Published 10/05/2021, 4:08 PM EDT
Aug 10, 2021; Montreal, Quebec, Canada; Bianca Andreescu of Canada reacts after winning her match against Harriet Dart of Great Britain (not pictured) during second round play at Stade IGA. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports.


Amongst all the tournaments throughout the year on both the men’s and women’s circuit, Indian Wells event holds a special place for tennis players as well as for fans. The tournament usually holds the March slot in the ATP calendar. However, it was one of the first events to announce cancellation due to the COVID-19 pandemic last year. Bianca Andreescu, the defending champion, recently participated in a time-honored Indian Wells tradition.

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Bianca Andreescu had a tough run on WTA tour after 2019 success

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Even this year, the event couldn’t take place in its usual schedule due to the pandemic and was postponed to October. However, the organizers confirmed that the tournament will follow its usual March slot from 2022.

Now, coming to the event this year, Dominic Thiem and Bianca Andreescu are the defending champions from 2019. While Thiem called off his season due to a wrist injury, Andreescu enters the tournament to defend her first WTA title.

Bianca Andreescu of Canada plays Angelique Kerber of Germany during the women’s final of the BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden in Indian Wells, California. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

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After winning Indian Wells event in 2019, Andreescu claimed the US Open, defeating Serena Williams in the final. Even though the Canadian is struggling for form on the WTA tour this year, the BNP Paribas Open could provide the required momentum.

Few days ago, Bianca reached the event and posed in-front of her mural at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. The painting, which was made by Mike Sullivan, is a tradition followed by the tournament since 2013.

Maria Sharapova and Rafael Nadal were the first ones to have their murals inscribed at Indian Wells in 2014. Along with these two, legendary American tennis player John McEnroe’s mural was also painted.

Indian Wells celebrates past year champions alongside hall of famers through mural paintings

Along with the past champions, the tournament follows the habit of painting the mural of a former tennis great. Ever since 2014, legends like Chris Evert, McEnroe, Martina Navratilova, Pete Sampras, Billie Jean King, Lindsay Davenport, and Jim Courier have been honored through murals.

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Aug 10, 2021; Montreal, Quebec, Canada; Bianca Andreescu of Canada hits a shot against Harriet Dart of Great Britain (not pictured) during second round play at Stade IGA. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports.

On the women’s draw, Andreescu is seeded 16th and could face the likes of Anett Kontaveit, Karolina Pliskova, Maria Sakkari from the top-half.

A lot has changed for the Canadian from the last time she won the title at Indian Wells. Thus, it will be a gigantic task for Andreescu to power past some strong opponents who are in exceptional form on the WTA tour at the moment.

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This year’s edition of the tournament will not feature tennis greats such as Serena Williams, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, and Roger Federer.

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Sagar Ashtakoula

483 articles

Sagar Ashtakoula is a tennis writer at EssentiallySports. He has been following the sport since 2007. Having developed an interest in creating content, he mixed his passion for writing with his love for tennis for 2 years at SportsKeeda before joining the tennis team at EssentiallySports.

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