Maria Sharapova reached her first final of 2013 on Friday, beating Maria Kirilenko 6-4, 6-3 in a semi-final slugfest to set up a title showdown with Caroline Wozniacki at Indian Wells.
By reaching the final, Sharapova is projected to rise one spot to No. 2 in the world when the new rankings are announced on Monday.
"It's better than three, right?" said Sharapova, who was more focused on capturing a first title since her 2012 French Open victory gave her a career Grand Slam.
She is playing in only her third tournament of the year. After withdrawing from Brisbane with a right collarbone injury she reached the semi-finals at the Australian Open and Doha.
The Russian lifted the trophy in 2006 and was runner-up last year to Victoria Azarenka.
Del Potro sets up Djoko semi
Juan Martin del Potro toppled Andy Murray on Friday to book a semi-final showdown with World No 1 Novak Djokovic at the Indian Wells Masters.
Del Potro, ranked seventh in the world and the seventh seed in this combined ATP and WTA tournament, beat World No. 3 Murray 6-7 (5/7), 6-3, 6-1.
The 2009 US Open champion from Argentina didn't face a break point until the third set and benefitted from Murray's eight double faults.