Bhupathi-Bopanna knocked out of Australian Open (Lead)

January 22nd, 2012 - 3:48 pm ICT by IANS  

Rohan Bopanna Melbourne, Jan 22 (IANS) India’s Mahesh Bhupathi and Rohan Bopanna crashed out of the Australian Open men’s double while Leander Paes and his Czech partner Radek Stepanek cruised into the quarterfinals here Sunday.

Bhupathi and Bopanna, seeded fourth, went down in straight-sets to Americans Scott Lipsky and Rajeev Ram in their pre-quarterfinal match.

Going into the match, the Indian pair had dropped just one set in the entire tournament. But three double faults and 11 unforced errors proved to be the stumbling block against the 13th seeds as they lost 6-7(8), 2-6.

Though Bhupathi and Bopanna hit similar number of winners like their opponents, they very poor on service returns, managing a meagre 28 percent of their returns.

Bhupathi and Bopanna still have a chance to win silverware in the mixed doubles event. The duo reached the second round of the mixed doubles with their partners Sania Mirza and Lisa Raymond.

Paes and Stepanek, who are unseeded, marched into the quarterfinals with another dominating performance. The Indo-Czech pair beat the third seeds Frenchman Michael Llodra and Serb Nenad Zimonjic 7-5, 7-6(7-2).

The Indo-Czech pair has not dropped a single set so far in the competition so far and hardly gave the third seeds a chance to settle in the match.

The duo smashed 33 winners on their way to the last eight where they will play the winner of the match between eight-seeds Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi and Jean-Julien Rojer and 10th seeded Eric Butorac and Bruno Soares.

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