KARACHI: Pakistan’s tennis ace Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi said on Monday that if his partnership with new teammate Jean-Julien Rojer produced good results, he would eliminate the option of joining India’s Rohan Bopanna again in future.
Qureshi achieved many a milestone with Rohan Bopanna, his Indian partner in doubles matches in the recent past. It was actually Bopanna who parted ways with Aisam in order to join compatriot Mahesh Bhupati, eyeing forceful participation in London Olympics later this year.
Qureshi, speaking at ‘Meet the Press’ at Karachi Press Club, said that this year he was committed to stay teamed up with Jean-Julien Rojer, who hails from Curaçao—a small island nation in the Caribbean. He is the only tennis player from his country in the top-1000 singles rankings.
Qureshi said he might consider joining Bopanna next year, but “if our combination produced some good results then I would continue playing with Jean-Julien and might not consider joining Rohan again”.
Qureshi recently performed brilliantly in Melbourne when he became the first player from his country to enter the quarterfinals of the Australian Open tennis tournament.
Aisam teamed up with Andrea Hlavackova of Czech Republic at the Margaret Court Arena to beat the formidable team of former world number one Jelena Jankovic of Serbia and rising Australian star Bernard Tomic in straight sets in the mixed doubles pre-quarterfinals of the year’s first grand slam event.
The 6-3, 6-3 triumph made him the first Pakistani player to have entered the last-eight stage in Australian Open history.
However, Qureshi fell in the third round of men’s doubles with Jean-Julien Rojer against the team of Eric Butorac (USA) and Bruno Soares (Brazil). “It was the first event with Rojer and a new team takes some time to make an effective combination. Rohan had powerful serves but Rojer is more agile. All the players have their strengths and weaknesses. Hopefully in two to three tournaments, we will start giving good results,” he said.
Aisam and Bopanna enjoyed a series of impressive performances on the international circuit during the time they played as a team. Popularly known as the Indo-Pak Express, the duo compiled a consistent season, reaching semifinals in seven tournaments, including the US Open, where they ended runners-up in 2010.
Qureshi said that he hopes to make it to the Olympics doubles, along with compatriot experienced Aqeel Khan. “My rankings at World doubles of No9 can help us qualify for Olympics. I have asked Aqeel to compete in more events to lift his rankings. That would help us in qualifying for Olympics, which would be the first ever Pakistani participation in tennis,” he stressed.
He said that he could team up with Indian Sania Mirza to make mixed doubles team in future but not now as the Indians are preparing for Olympics. “I might team up with her in future. She is also ranked in doubles top 10 and if she maintains her ranking, then a strong team could be formed with her,” he added.Read More
KARACHI: Pakistan’s tennis ace Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi on Monday created history in Melbourne when he became the first player from his country to enter the quarterfinals of the Australian Open tennis tournament.
Aisam teamed up with Andrea Hlavackova of Czech Republic at the Margaret Court Arena to conquer the formidable team of former world number one Jelena Jankovic of Serbia and rising Australian star Bernard Tomic in straight sets in the mixed doubles pre-quarterfinals of the year’s first grand slam event.
The 6-3, 6-3 triumph makes Aisam the first Pakistani player to have entered the last-eight stage in Australian Open history. Aisam, who along with his former Indian partner Rohan Bopanna, created history in 2010 by reaching the final of the men’s doubles event at the US Open, was in full flow during the match against Serbia’s Jankovic and Tomic. He served and vollied well and received great support from Hlavackova as the seventh seeded duo just sailed in the quarterfinals of the tournament.
Monday, however, was a day of mixed fortunes for Aisam as his challenge in the men’s doubles event fizzled following a third-round defeat.
Together with Jean-Julien Rojer – his new partner – Aisam was up against the team of Eric Butorac (USA) & Bruno Soares (Brazil) on show court 3. The Butorac-Soares team won the opening set 6-4 and then brushed aside their opponents 6-2 in the second one to cruise into the next stage of the tournament.
The Australian Open was Aisam’s first major international assignment with Rojer following his split with Bopanna late last year. Bopanna opted to team up with his compatriot Mahesh Bhupati with an eye on this summer’s Olympic Games in London.
Aisam and Bopanna enjoyed a series of impressive performances on the international circuit during the time they played as a team. Popularly known as the Indo-Pak Express, the duo compiled a consistent season, reaching the semifinals or better at seven tournaments in all, including the US Open, where they ended runners-up in 2010.
The Aisam-Bopanna duo managed to reach the quarterfinals of the French Open where they lost to the Bryan brothers before going the whole hog and winning the Gerry Weber Open. Their biggest achievement of the year though came when they lifted their first Masters title in Paris to become the seventh doubles team to qualify for the ATP World Tour Finals.
However after the season-ending World Tour Finals last November, Bopanna dropped a bombshell by announcing that he is splitting with Aisam to join Indian veteran Bhupati. Aisam’s new partner Rojer who hails from Curaçao — a small island nation in the Caribbean — is the only tennis player from his country in the top-1000 singles rankings.Read More
MELBOURNE: Aisamul Haq Qureshi and his Dutch partner Jean-Julien Rojer bowed out of the men’s doubles event of the Australian Open after a 6-4, 6-2 defeat to Bruno Soares and Eric Butorac in the third round.
Aisam and Rojer were totally outplayed by the 10th-seeded pair with the match lasting just a little over 33 minutes. It was the first time the Pakistani tagged up with Rojer in a Grand Slam event after his former partner Rohan Bopanna of India decided to team up with Mahesh Bhupathi ahead of the Olympics.
First time partners, Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi of Pakistan and Jean-Julien Rojer of Curacao, fended off early resistance to dump the German–Canadian duo, Philipp Marx and Adil Shamasdin, in straight sets at the Australian Open 2012 on Saturday. They formulated 7-6(8), 6-4 victory over their opponents to advance into the third round at this first Grand Slam event held on the hard courts in Melbourne, Australia.
Eighth seeded tandem of Qureshi and Rojer stayed focused throughout the match to trounce the German–Canadian team in an hour and 35 minutes long duel. Battling each other for the first time, they not only took lead in the head-to-head series by 1-0 against their opponents but also booked a spot in the third round.
The high flying duo assertively stepped on court number 18 at the Melbourne Park and easily swiped in entire serves without facing any hurdle. However, they failed to seek any break opportunity and dragged the set to a tie-breaker. Qureshi and Rojer dominated in it and bagged the opener with a 7-6(8) success.
The Pakistani Dutch team improved their collaboration in the following set and drew the first blood in the opening game. Later, they held remaining serves and sealed the set by winning six games to four in 36 minutes.
Overall, the newly formed pair displayed exceptional skills and spilled no unforced errors. They clobbered a slightly lower first serve share of 69 percent as compared to their rivals’ 72 percent and clicked spectacular 38 out of 43 points on it.
The winning combination of Qureshi and Rojer made drastic start of 2012 as they were ousted in the opening round at the Brisbane International 2012. Adding further to their misery, the duo crashed out by the top seeded Americans, Bob and Mike Bryan, in the first round at the Apia International Sydney before entering this tournament.
Next challenge for the eighth seeded pair is the American – Brazilian tandem of Eric Butorac and Bruno Soares. They trashed Flavio Cipolla of Italy and Denis Istomin of Uzbekistan with a 6-2, 6-3 score line to set-up this meeting.
Qureshi’s previous doubles partner, Rohan Bopanna, will join him in the third round. Bopanna paired up with his compatriot, Mahesh Bhupathi, and dumped the Aussie–Filipino team of Carsten Ball and Treat Conrad Huey in straight sets to reach this spot.
Dubbed the ‘Indo-Pak Express’, Qureshi and Bopanna team not only enjoyed their career best season last year but also brought the two rival nations together. They actively promoted the India Pakistan rapprochement and triumphed titles at the Gerry Weber Open in Halle and Paris Masters 1000 event.Read More
Seventh seeded duo, Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi of Pakistan and Andrea Hlavackova of Czech Republic, dumped the Aussie-Serb pair of Bernard Tomic and Jelena Jankovic in straight sets at the Australian Open 2012 on Monday. They registered a 6-3, 6-3 victory over their opponents to secure a third round spot at this first Grand Slam event taking place in Melbourne, Australia.
The Pakistani-Czech tandem confidently entered the Melbourne Park and earned a straight set victory in a 53 minutes long marathon. With their amazing collaboration, the pair broke their opponents’ serve three times and not only advanced into the third round but also inched closer to bag $135,500 prize money.
First time paired Qureshi and Hlavackova assertively entered the Margaret Court Arena and plucked in entire serves without facing any breakpoint. They converted two out of three break opportunities to their advantage and clinched the opener by winning six games to three in 24 minutes. The Pakistani-Czech team clobbered a slightly lower first serve share of 71 percent as compared to their rivals’ 76 percent but clicked spectacular 11 out of 12 points on it. They also hammered 12 winners and spilled fewer unforced errors.
The higher ranked pair kept momentum rolling into the following set and smoothly held entire serves after blocking the lone breakpoint they came across. Qureshi and Hlavackova capitalised on one out of three break opportunities and pocketed the set with a 6-3 win in just under half an hour. They again formulated a slightly lower first serve share and clinched an impressive 15 out of 18 points on it.
The high flying Pakistani-Czech collaboration will next face the winner of the match between the Japanese wild card entrants and the Italians, Roberta Vinci and Daniele Bracciali.
Qureshi’s ex-partner Rohan Bopanna of India will join him in the third round. He teamed up with American competitor, Lisa Raymond, to crush the local stars, Casey Dellacqua and Matthew Ebden, in straight sets to reach this spot.
The Indo American pair dusted away six out of seven breakpoints they came across and converted half of the eight break opportunities to their advantage, sealing the deal with a 6-4, 6-2 score line in 55 minutes.Read More