Novak Djokovic suffers 'weird' loss to qualifier Taro Daniel at Indian Wells

Djokovic loses in Indian Wells to Taro Daniel

Early in the second set, Djokovic experimented with drop shots to avoid the lengthy rallies with Daniel, and the plan was mostly working.

Djokovic had further surgery on a persistent elbow injury in February.

"It felt like first match I ever played on the tour".

But the decision backfired as he peppered the court with 61 unforced errors and totally faded away in the third set in the second round clash that lasted 2 hours 30 minutes. "I didn't serve too good today but overall I'm pleased".

In just his second tournament since Wimbledon past year - his first comeback at the Australian Open in January saw him lose in the fourth round to Hyeon Chung before he made a decision to go under the knife for a "small medical intervention" - Djokovic looked well below his best as he went down 7-6 (7-3) 4-6 6-1 to a man ranked 109 in the world. You know, the nighttime is much more deader.

"Yeah, it's been a long time since I have been interrupted at night and have to come back the next day". The surface doesn't react so much.

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"But he obviously wasn't in his top form, so I was able to take advantage of it".

Zverev held a 4-1 lead in the third set, but the German lost five straight games to be beaten.

"And I was able to stay pretty tough, so I'm pretty proud of that, yeah".

'I was not even supposed to be here because of the surgery that was only five, six weeks ago.

Daniel, who beat Britain's Cameron Norrie in the first round, will next meet Leonardo Mayer, who defeated Ruben Bemelmans 6-4 6-1. But you put extra effort to manage all that's happening in your head.

Meanwhile, top seed Roger Federer wrapped up his rain-delayed match against Argentina's Federico Delbonis, winning 6-3, 7-6 (8-6).

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"I think it's only (a matter of) time to get where he deserves to be", said Del Potro. Where normally, you know, when you've played a lot of matches, you just rock up, you hit a good serve, play a good point, 15-Love, you just move along with the score.

"But it's not easy to deal with this kind of frustrations after injuries or when you always be the favorite to win a tournament, you come here and you lose in first round".

The Serb broke for 4-3 and it was all he needed to level the match as he secured the second set with a down-the-line backhand victor.

Cilic, the second seed, disposed of Marton Fucsovics 7-5 6-3 and 2013 runner-up Del Potro outclassed Australian wildcard Alex de Minaur 6-2 6-1.

Frenchman Gael Monfils survived a match point before beating big-serving American John Isner 6-7 (5-7), 7-6 (7-3), 7-5 in a contest that had only one break.

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