x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Sandstorms delay the qualifying games of tennis Championships

The final qualifying round for the Dubai Tennis Championships are delayed because of the weather.

Novak Djokovic, who won the Mubadala World Tennis Championship on the last day of 2011, is going for a fourth straight win at the Dubai Tennis Championships.
Novak Djokovic, who won the Mubadala World Tennis Championship on the last day of 2011, is going for a fourth straight win at the Dubai Tennis Championships.

DUBAI // The final round of the qualifying for the Dubai Duty Free Tennis ATP Championships have been delayed because of the inclement weather.

The matches were supposed to start at 11am, but the sandstorms forced the organisers to delay the start to 2pm, when the ATP officials will inspect the conditions.

The battle for the four qualifying spots pits Andrey Golubev against Malek Jaziri, Michael Berrer and Tasuma Ito, Marco Chiudinelli and Arnau Bruges-Davi, and Grega Zemlja against Lukas Lacko.

The men's tournament, featuring eight of the world's top 10, gets underway tomorrow.

Andy Murray seems set to be eased into the pointy end of the tournament, having been drawn in the top and arguably easier half of the draw.

His first-round opponent is one of three qualifiers situated in Murray’s half. Also in the top half are Sergei Bubka, the son of the Ukrainian pole-vault star of the same name, and the UAE wild card, Omar Awadhy.

Novak Djokovic, the world No 1, faces Germany’s Cedrik-Marcel Stebe, while at the other, tougher end of the draw, Roger Federer, the world No 3, meets Michael Llodra.

Djokovic’s younger brother, Marko, 20, is also in the draw and the wild card must pass the fourth and final qualifier to set up a clash with either the Argentine Juan Martin del Potro, the No 8 seed, or the No 79-ranked Lukas Rosol of the Czech Republic.