- Iran to appeal seizure of 9/11 compensation money
- Oil producers meet on output cuts, possible rollover
- One killed, 14 wounded in Ohio nightclub shooting
- Cities and monuments switch off for Earth Hour
- Blasts kill six as Bangladesh commandos storm Islamist hideout
- Top honour for Gulf Hotel
- Barbar clinch handball title
- Federer, Wawrinka advance in Miami
- Innovative fabrics bark up Tokyo fashion tree
- GPIC exceeds targets
Djokovic survives scare in Doha season opener
By: dt news , Posted on 03-Jan-2017
Doha : Novak Djokovic battled back from 5-1 down against world number 63 Jan-Lennard Struff to claim his first victory of the season at the Qatar Open on Monday.
The world number two lost his opening two service games and struggled with the German's big serves in the early exchanges.
But the Serb rallied in determined fashion to eventually take the first-round match 7-6 (7/1), 6-3.
"It wasn't a great start, I was 1-5 down, it didn't look very good,"Djokovic said after winning in just under 90 minutes.
He attributed his slow start to early-season rustiness rather than any long-term concerns over his form, following a relatively poor second half of the season in 2016.
"I guess I had to get more time to get the engine started. It's the first match of the year, you never know how you're going to start.
"I mean, I was a bit flat on my feet, and Struff, credit to him for playing aggressive, hitting the serves well, and ripping (the) ball from the baseline.
"But I stayed composed because I knew, I believed that I could find the rhythm, start reading his serve better, and that's what happened."
Djokovic, who is the defending champion in Doha, hit 17 winners but also 20 unforced errors.
In total, his opponent thundered down nine aces.
The 12-time Grand Slam winner is looking to reclaim his number one ranking from Andy Murray, who is also in Doha, and is the tournament's number one seed.
If matches go to form the rivals will meet in a mouthwatering final on January 7.
Before the tournament, Murray said Djokovic would be his main rival this season, but the Serb said 2017 would be about more than two players.
"We have the return of (Rafael) Nadal and (Roger) Federer that we cannot count out in any circumstances because of their history and results and the quality of players that they are," he said.
Also on Monday there were victories for Dustin Brown, who edged past Argentina's Facundo Bagnis in three sets in the first round of the singles, 6-1, 6-7 (2/7), 6-4.
And number four seed, Belgium's David Goffin, who beat Murray in an exhibition event in Abu Dhabi last week defeated Robin Hasse of the Netherlands, 7-6 (7/4), 6-2.
Murray's begins his attempt to win the Qatar Open, an event he last won in 2009, with a first-round match against France's Jeremy Chardy on Tuesday.
The newly knighted Scotsman though was in action in the doubles on Monday, but he and partner Mariusz Fyrstenberg lost in straight sets to David Marrero and Nenad Zimonjic.
Miami : Roger Federer survived a brave challenge from American qualifier Frances Tiafoe before emerging with a 7-6 (7/2) 6-3 victory as he got his Miami Open title bid underway on Saturday. Tiafoe, ranked 101st in the world, struggled against Federer's serve but was strong on his own and forced a first set tie-break...Read More
Paris : Roger Federer jumped four places to sixth in the latest ATP rankings released Monday, leapfrogging rival Rafael Nadal following his Indian Wells Masters triumph. Federer eliminated Nadal in the fourth round on his way to his fifth India Wells title, beating fellow Swiss Stan Wawrinka in the final. Andy...Read More
World No. 2 Novak Djokovic was sent crashing out of the ATP Mexico Open on Thursday after being upset in straight sets by sixth seeded Nick Kyrgios in the first ever meeting between the two. The top-seeded Djokovic, who was back in action this week for the first time since his shock second-round exit at the...Read More
Acapulco : Second-seeded Rafael Nadal cruised into the quarter-finals of the ATP Acapulco tournament on Wednesday with a comprehensive 6-1, 6-1 victory over Paolo Lorenzi. Spain's Nadal, a two-time winner in Acapulco who is playing his first tournament since falling to Roger Federer in the Australian Open...Read More
Rome : Five-time Grand Slam champion Maria Sharapova has been given a wildcard to play in the Italian Open in May, organisers said Wednesday. The former world number one makes her return to the circuit in Stuttgart in April after completing a 15-month ban for doping. "We officially announce the wild card for the...Read More
Acapulco : Novak Djokovic said Monday he is ready to atone for his shock Australian Open exit as he prepares to return to action in Acapulco. The 29-year-old world number two makes his bow in the tournament on Tuesday, his first match since tumbling out in Melbourne last month in the second round against...Read More
Paris : Roger Federer has climbed back into the ATP top 10 on the strength of his epic 18th Grand Slam title at the Australian Open. The 35-year-old Swiss great defied old rival Rafael Nadal on Sunday in a thrilling five-setter in Melbourne to move up seven spots to 10th in the latest rankings...Read More
The Australian Open will have the climax fans craved after Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer both came through five-set thrillers to reach the final. Nadal holds a 6-2 advantage over Federer in Grand Slam finals where they have played each other, although Federer won the last meeting between the pair in 2015. With...Read More
Melbourne : Roger Federer was in tears as he won a thrilling, five-set Australian Open final against his great rival Rafael Nadal to clinch a record-extending 18th Grand Slam title on Sunday. Federer won 6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3 in three hours 38 minutes on Rod Laver Arena to move four major titles ahead of Nadal...Read More
Melbourne : Unstoppable Serena Williams zeroed in on a record-breaking 23rd Grand Slam title Thursday by setting up an Australian Open final against her older sister Venus, as the siblings' dream came true. The ruthless world number two proved one step too far for unseeded Croat Mirjana Lucic-Baroni, whose...Read More