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Thursday, March 23, 2023

Tennis: Djokovic sweeps Khachanov and joins the semi-finals in Dubai

World No.1 Novak Djokovic qualified for the semi-finals of the ATP 500 tournament in Dubai on Thursday by outscoring Russian Karen Khachanov, 17th in the world, in two sets (6-2, 6-2) and 1:06.

Quadruple winner of the event (2009-2011 and 2013), the Serb quickly took the service of his opponent in the two rounds and Khachanov also showed signs of annoyance with his coverage of the field.

Djokovic will meet in the last four the winner of the 100% French confrontation between Gaël Monfils and Richard Gasquet, scheduled for the evening. Monfils remains on a series of eleven victories in a row at the time of facing his compatriot.

In the other semi-final, the Greek Stefanos Tsisipas will meet the Briton, Daniel Evans.

Tsitsipas, the 6th player in the world, won a fight of almost two and a half hours against the German Jan-Lennard Struff (N.34).

Winner 4-6, 6-4, 6-4, the recent winner of the Marseille tournament experienced some difficulties.

“It was very tight, I was a little tired today,” said Tsitsipas after the match. But “this match was important to me, so I tried to hide it,” he said.

Solid on their face-off, Tsitsipas and Struff went back to back, especially in the last heat, but it was ultimately the German who cracked first by conceding his service game at 4-4 in the 3rd set.

His opponent confirmed the break-in stride to put the counter of Struff-Tsitsipas confrontations tied (two wins each).

Evans won 6-2, 7-6 (11/9) against Russian seed Andrey Rublev, seeded N.6 of the UAE tournament.

“It was difficult (…) I just didn’t want to play the third set, I think that’s what made the difference” in the second set, said the 37th world player.

The 29-year-old Briton has played two finals on the ATP circuit but has no title to his name.

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Qamar Munawer
Qamar Munawer
Associate Editor at The Eastern Herald.

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