THE EXPRESS TRIBUNE, KARACHI, 11th OCTOBER 2013: Aisamul Haq Qureshi and his Dutch partner Jean-Julien Rojer, who had received a bye in the first round, cruised into the quarter-finals of the Shanghai Masters men’s doubles event yesterday.
The fourth seeds defeated the Polish duo of Mariusz Fyrsten and Marcin Matkowski 6-4, 3-6, 10-7 in an hour and 16 minutes in the second round of the tournament. Earlier, Fyrsten and Matkowski had overcome German’s Andre Begemann and Martin Emmrich 6-3, 7-6 in their opening-round match.
Aisam and Rojer will now play fifth-seeds Marcel Melo from Brazil and Croatia’s Ivan Dodig in their next match.
Melo and Dodig defeated Roger Federer and local player Zhang Ze 6-1, 1-6, 10-8 in their second-round encounter.
Federer crashes out of event
Federer crashed out of the Shanghai Masters yesterday at the hands of flamboyant Frenchman Gael Monfils — another damaging defeat in a miserable season for the former Swiss great.
Monfils went toe-to-toe with the 17-time Grand Slam champion during a feast of attacking tennis, eventually emerging on top 6-4, 6-7 (5/7), 6-3.
Federer, playing his first tournament since the US Open, started in the worst possible way, limply losing his first service game to immediately hand the initiative to Monfils, who went on to take the opener.
Despite vocal support from a partisan crowd, Federer was broken midway through the second set but he broke back, sealing the game with an overhead smash.
Monfils, clad in bright orange, drew first blood in the tie-break but crucially put a relatively straightforward forehand long when he had a chance to engineer match points, allowing Federer back into the set and the Swiss made no mistake.
With both players sticking to a plan of all-out attack, Monfils grabbed the initiative, breaking to take a 3-1 lead and managed to save the break points that Federer carved out before going on to seal the match.
Federer, who made early exits at Wimbledon and the US Open, came to Shanghai seeking much-needed points as he bids to reach next month’s World Tour Finals, which he has won a record six times.
Earlier, seventh-seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga brushed aside Kei Nishikori to reach the quarter-finals as Juan Martin del Potro progressed with a walkover.