Miami Masters: Aisam confident of clinching doubles title

Published: March 29, 2013

Aisam is upbeat about his chances of winning the doubles title at Miami Masters this year after a dominant display in the semi-finals. PHOTO: FILE AFP

KARACHI: 

Pakistan tennis ace Aisamul Haq Qureshi is confident of securing the doubles title with Jean-Julien Rojer at the Miami Masters as the pair gears up to play the final today.

Aisam and Rojer reached their second final of the year after they prevailed over second-seeds Marcel Granollers and Marc López 6-3, 6-2. The Pakistan-Dutch pairing put up a convincing show in the semi-final, making a strong statement after facing a string of first-round defeats at the ATP World Tour Masters 1000, Indian Wells and Dubai Open.

Aisam and Rojer had earlier featured in the final in Marseille, France in February.

“I’m confident of winning the final,” Aisam told The Express Tribune. “I’ve never won any trophy in the first three months of the year. But so far, we are playing well and we are in good form. We lost a couple of tournaments before this, but I’m hoping we can carry on the momentum we have gained during the event. Defeating the second seeds was a big deal and it definitely gave us the confidence before the final.”

Meanwhile, Aisam was also hopeful of a good show in Myanmar where he will feature in Pakistan’s Davis Cup Asia-Oceania zone Group II tie against New Zealand.

“We want to take Pakistan to Group I — that’s the aim.”

Williams, Sharapova to clash in Miami final

In the women’s singles event, five-time champion Serena Williams wasted no time booking her berth in the final by steamrolling Agnieszka Radwanska 6-0, 6-3 to set up a title clash with third-seed Maria Sharapova.

Russia’s Sharapova, a four-time runner up in Miami, was equally dominant as she hammered Jelena Jankovic 6-2, 6-1 in the other semi-final.

“I am excited because I am in the final,” said Williams. “It definitely felt really good today. I kept my unforced errors rather low. I definitely didn’t start out the best. Slow and steady hopefully wins the race.”

Sharapova is in her fifth final in the quest for her first Miami title.

“It would mean so much to me,” said Sharapova. “The fans give me so much support here. I love this city. It was the first city I came to in this country when I was a little girl and I would love to win.”

In men’s action, Andy Murray reached the semi-finals by ousting Marin Cilic 6-4, 6-3.

“I played more solid as the match went on,” said Murray. “Once I got back on level terms in the first set I started to do better, so many long rallies, long points, long games.”

The Scottish second seed, who won the 2009 title and lost last year’s final, will face Richard Gasquet who surprised Czech fourth-seed Tomas Berdych 6-3, 6-3.

The other semi-final sees third-seeded Spaniard David Ferrer against 34-year-old giant-killer Tommy Haas, who shocked the world number one and two-time defending champion Novak Djokovic on Tuesday.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 30th, 2013.

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