Djokovic into semifinals as Zverev, Rublev battle for finals spot
World number one, Novak Djokovic, made light work of Poland’s Hurbert Hurkacz, yesterday afternoon, to qualify for the semifinals of the ongoing tennis Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships holding in Dubai.
Playing on the centre court of the Aviation Club Tennis Centre, Djokovic felt no pressure as he raced to a 4-1 lead before finishing off the first set with an ace for 6-3.
The second set was no bother either for the Serb, as he sealed a straight sets victory, booking his place in today’s semifinal blockbuster.
Dubbed the ‘Prince of the desert’, the world number one is looking to scoop up a record sixth title in the competition this weekend.
Elsewhere, Russia’s Andrey Rublev, the second seed, also advanced to the semifinals by beating Dutch, Botic van de Zandschulp, 6-3, 7-6 (3) . Rublev, ranked number six, will meet Germany’s Alexander Zverev, the number seven seed next for a place in the final.
Keen on a win to return to top form, Alexander Zverev is putting to rest his injury and court battles. A win here will signal that the seventh-seeded German is approaching his best after an ankle injury at last year’s French Open.
There was enough evidence yesterday as he broke down the resistance of Italy’s Lorenzo Sonego with a 7-5, 6-4 victory to enter the semifinals on his second visit to Dubai.
Zverev, who was consistent from the baseline, didn’t miss out on the forays to the net to tuck away the volleys. World number 67, Sonego, matched Zverev, a former world number two, in volleying throughout their one-hour, 52-minute match, but made several unforced errors at crucial points.
In the duel of big servers, Zverev came under pressure and had to save six break points, three of them in the final game when Sonega threatened to prolong the set. But the winner of 19 ATP titles pulled off some big serves, the last one an ace, to win the match.