Men’s Quarterfinals Begin Thursday in Indian Wells
How the Top Half of the Draw Shook Out
Gael Monfils  vs. Dominic Thiem 
Gael Monfils reached the quarterfinal without being tested by any seeded players. He did take out 35-year-old German Philipp Kohlschreiber, who made waves in the third round when he defeated Novak Djokovic 6-4, 6-4. His best result at the tournament came in 2016, when he also reached the quarterfinal, but was defeated by Milos Raonic.
Dominic Thiem reached the semifinal without dropping a set. Thiem leads the head to head with Monfils at 4 and 0. They most recently played on clay, in the 2018 Buenos Aires semifinal, which Thiem won 6-2, 6-1.
Being familiar with his game, Thiem is not surprised at the French player’s success here. He explained: “Gaël, he has a very good season so far. Won Rotterdam, played good Dubai. When he's on, I think everybody knows what he's capable of. Hard to hit a winner against him. He's so fast and he can also put a lot of pressure. It's going to be a tough match and completely different than today, and for sure also great fun.”
Milos Raonic  vs. Miomir Kecmanovic [LL]
On his way to the quarterfinal, Milos Raonic took out American Sam Querrey 7-6(1), 6-4 before narrowly getting past another American, Marcos Giron, 4-6, 6-4, 6-4. He then defeated German Kan-Lennard Struff 6-4, 6-3 in the round of 16 in under 1 hour 15 minutes.
The two players have only met once, and it happened this year in Brisbane. Raonic defeated Kecmanovic 6-3, 7-6(2). The Canadian knows what he needs to do to get the same result and advance to the semifinal: “[Kecmanovic] plays fast and flat off both sides. He tries to take time away from me. I remember a few times I was a little bit too passive, but there is a few things I feel I could do better. And, obviously, he had a really good week there, qualifying and winning his first match in Brisbane. And then here, getting a nice lucky loser spot with a bye, and winning three good matches so far and winning one match in quallies, as well. It's going to be important that I can sort of try to take away his rhythm and give him a few different looks.”
Kecmanovic was lucky indeed. He only met one seeded player in the tournament so far, the 30th seeded Laslo Djere, whom he beat 6-2, 7-6(3). His round of 16 opponent, Yoshihito Nishioka retired after the first set. This will be his first tour-level quarterfinal. He knows his situation is special: “I'm really happy about it, especially since I didn't really do anything before this. Obviously tough to see your opponent retire like that, but I'm still happy that I managed to get to the quarters.”