March 9, 2019 / 11:35 PM / 15 days ago

Tennis-Keys blows late lead to fall to Barthel at Indian Wells

INDIAN WELLS, Calif., March 9 (Reuters) - German Mona Barthel came from behind to defeat error-prone American Madison Keys 3-6 6-1 7-5 and reach the third round of the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells on Saturday.

The 17th-seeded Keys had the match on her racket serving with a 5-4 lead in the third set but lost three straight games, including her final service game to love, to allow the unseeded Barthel advance.

Next up for Barthel is a meeting with either Estonian Kaia Kanepi or countrywoman Julia Gorges, who play their second-round match later on Saturday.

Another German, Angelique Kerber, was nearly perfect en route to a 6-0 6-2 dismantling of Yulia Putintseva, winning 93 percent of her first service points under sunny skies in the Southern California desert.

The eighth seed will meet red-hot Russian Natalia Vikhlyantseva in the third round after the qualifier crushed Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro 6-2 6-0 earlier in the day.

Reporting by Rory Carroll, editing by Nick Mulvenney

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