Djokovic wins, then poses for selfie with his opponent

Getty Images
0 Comments

DOHA, Qatar (AP) After Novak Djokovic won his second-round match at the Qatar Open, his opponent asked him to pose for a selfie.

The 12-time Grand Slam champion cheerfully obliged.

“I just have to mention that making a selfie after the match was over, that was the first time that I ever had this kind of experience in my career,” Djokovic said on court after beating Horacio Zeballos of Argentina 6-3, 6-4 Wednesday. “So, Horacio, well done. Very original.”

Djokovic managed to break the Argentine once in each set while never facing a break point on the other side.

“Credit to Zeballos for playing some fearless tennis,” said Djokovic, the defending champion. “He was stepping in and trying to go for his shots. He wasn’t backing up to the baseline.”

With the win, the second-seeded Djokovic advanced to the quarterfinals and will next face Radek Stepanek of Czech Republic.

Stepanek defeated wild-card entry Arthur De Greef of Belgium 6-3, 6-2. The 38-year-old Stepanek is the oldest ATP Tour quarterfinalist since 42-year-old Jimmy Connors reached the final eight at the 1995 Halle tournament.

Also, Fernando Verdasco needed six match points, three in the second set tiebreaker, to beat fourth-seeded David Goffin of Belgium 6-1, 7-6 (6).

Parma Ladies Open semifinals postponed to same day as final

parma ladies open
Valerio Origo/Getty Images
3 Comments

PARMA, Italy — The semifinals of the Parma Ladies Open have been postponed by a day and will be played shortly before Saturday’s final.

The decision was made because of persistent rain at the clay-court tournament on Friday.

Top-seeded Maria Sakkari will start on center court against Danka Kovinic at 10:30 a.m. local time (0830 GMT) on Saturday before sixth-seeded Ana Bogdan’s match against Mayar Sherif.

The final will be after 6 p.m. local time, shortly after the doubles final – with the doubles semifinals also being played earlier in the day on a different court.

Top-seeded Sakkari reaches semifinals at Parma Ladies Open

Maria Sakkari
Robert Prange/Getty Images
3 Comments

PARMA, Italy — Top-seeded Maria Sakkari rallied past 97th-ranked Maryna Zanevska 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 on Thursday at the Parma Ladies Open to reach her first semifinal since the grass-court season.

Sakkari, who has gone three sets in all three of her matches this week, will face Danka Kovinic for a spot in the final of the clay-court event after Kovinic beat Jasmine Paolini 6-4, 6-4.

In her previous semifinal, Sakkari lost to Belinda Bencic in Berlin in June. The seventh-ranked Greek player was eliminated by Wang Xiyu in the second round of the U.S. Open on Aug. 31.

In the bottom half of the draw, Mayar Sherif of Egypt beat American opponent Lauren Davis 7-6 (2), 6-3 to reach her second career semifinal. Sherif next faces Ana Bogdan, who defeated fellow Romanian Irina-Camelia Begu 6-2, 7-6 (6).