Throughout her illustrious career, Venus Williams has won almost 50 WTA titles although none of those came at Indian Wells, not playing in the desert between 2002-2015.
Venus had played well there in the last three years and that continued in 2019 too, ousting the 3rd seed Petra Kvitova 4-6, 7-5, 6-4 in two hours and 27 minutes, beating the Czech for the third time in seven matches.
The 23rd seed and Dubai champion Belinda Bencic needed just 73 minutes to oust Alison Van Uytvanck 6-4, 6-1, doing a lot of damage with the first serve and getting broken only twice. The Belgian managed to stay in touch until 4-4 after erasing the deficit twice before Belinda scored another break for a 5-4 lead, closing the set with a hold at love.
The 5th seed Karolina Pliskova survived an early scare against Misaki Doi to notch a 6-7, 6-1, 6-1 win, losing 12 points on serve in sets two and three to mount the pressure on her opponent and sail towards the finish line in an hour and 40 minutes.