Don’t wake him up. Cameron Norrie (26th) won the Indian Wells Masters 1000 in his third participation and in the same edition in which he won his first match, after two previous defeats. He beat Nikoloz Basilashvili (36th) 3-6, 6-4, 6-1 and lifted the most important title of his career at age 26.
In 2018 and 2019 the pupil of Argentine Facundo Lugones had fallen, respectively, against Taro Daniel and Felix-Auger Aliassime in round of 128 of the Californian event. Two and a half years later, he is nothing more and nothing less than the great champion. He put a finishing touch to his season that already brought more than 40 wins, a title in five finals and almost 50 positions of promotion in the ranking. The now British number one is, on top, the first Indian Wells winner of his country. Greg Rusedski (in 1998), Tim Henman (2001 and 2004) and Andy Murray (2009) had reached the final, but without success in the definition.
While his title seemed highly likely as the tournament progressed, when it started it was a long way off. However, a curiosity could anticipate what Norrie eventually ended up achieving: only three champions of this contest were not in the Top 25, they all had something in common; they were ranked 26th in the ranking, just like him. Jim Courier (1991), Alex Corretja (2000) and Ivan Ljubicic make up this unusual section of winners. Meanwhile, now, Jimmy Connors (1976, 1981, 1984), Roscoe Tanner (1978 and 1979), Marcelo Ríos (1998), Rafael Nadal (2017, 2009 and 2013) and Norrie are the five left-handers who touched the sky with the hands in Indian Wells.
Finally, the player from university tennis will be ranked 17th in the ranking from Monday. In the race for the Turin Masters, he will place tenth, 115 points behind Hubert Hukacz, last in the qualifying zone after Nadal’s already confirmed loss.