Luca Nardi, World’s No. 123, Stuns Novak Djokovic at Indian Wells

Luca Nardi of Italy at the BNP Paribas Open in March 2024
Luca Nardi of Italy at the BNP Paribas Open in March 2024. Photo by Ella Ling/Shutterstock (14381616dn)

Novak Djokovic is out of the 2024 Indian Wells, aka BNP Paribas Open. Djokovic was eliminated at Indian Wells after suffering a surprising 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 third-round loss to Luca Nardi, the No. 123 ranked player in the world. 

This was not only the biggest win for Nardi in his career but also a historic one. He became the lowest-ranked tennis player to beat Djokovic at Grand Slams or ATP Masters 1000 tournaments. That honor previously belonged to Kevin Anderson, who beat Djokovic at the 2008 Miami Open as the world’s No. 122.

What makes Nardi’s win even more special is that he almost didn’t make the tournament. Nardi failed to make it through qualifiers but ended up getting in the main draw as a “lucky loser.” He received an invite as the replacement for injured Tomas Martin Etcheverry. 

“This is a miracle,” Nardi said after the match. “I’m a 20-year-old guy, 100 in the world, and beating Novak. So, crazy. Crazy.”

For Luca Nardi, reaching the fourth round of the 2024 BNP Paribas Open is his biggest career success. It is the furthest he advanced at the ATP Tour Masters 1000, besting his second-round appearance at Monte Carlo last year. Nardi is yet to make his first Grand Slam appearance.

Djokovic, on the other hand, ends his Indian Wells appearance a lot earlier than expected. He won the tournament five times and was playing there for the first time since 2019.