After a solid off-season, Stan Wawrinka is growing in confidence and beginning 2019 in a positive frame of mind. Twenty-four hours on from beating Karen Khachanov at the Qatar ExxonMobil Open, the 33-year-old got the better of Nicolas Jarry of Chile 6-4, 7-6(3) over 89 minutes for a place in the quarter-finals.
Wawrinka, the 2008 Doha finalist who went 17-17 last year, broke Jarry in the fifth game of the first set and took early control of the second set tie-break. He sets up a clash against seventh-seeded Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut, who cruised past fellow Spaniard and qualifier Guillermo Garcia-Lopez 6-1, 6-4 in 70 minutes.
Tomas Berdych recorded his 11th win in 15 FedEx ATP Head2Head meetings against Fernando Verdasco, rallying from a set down to beat the eighth seed 4-6, 6-3, 7-5. The 33-year-old Czech, who reached the championship match in 2015 (l. to Ferrer), improves to 12-5 in Doha.
Berdych will meet Pierre-Hugues Herbert in the quarter-finals. The Frenchman edged past Maximilian Marterer 6-3, 6-7(6), 7-6(6) in two hours and 29 minutes.
Elsewhere, Argentina’s Guido Pella withdrew ahead of his second round clash against fourth seed Marco Cecchinato of Italy due to lower back pain. Pella now faces Serbia’s Dusan Lajovic, who edged past Lithuanian qualifier Ricardas Berankis 7-6(4), 0-6, 7-5 in two hours and 11 minutes.
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Djokovic Brothers Book Semi-final Spot
Marko Djokovic and Novak Djokovic continued their run in Doha, beating Damir Dzumhur and Dusan Lajovic 7-5, 3-6, 10-7 to reach the semi-finals.
The Serbian brothers advanced after 89 minutes, saving eight of 11 break points en route to victory. Novak Djokovic also eliminated Dzumhur from singles action on Tuesday, dropping just three games to triumph 6-1, 6-2.
Standing between the wild cards and the championship match will be David Goffin and Pierre-Hugues Herbert. Goffin and Herbert beat third seeds Nikola Mektic and Alexander Peya 6-2, 3-6, 10-3.
Robin Haase and Matwe Middelkoop needed only 58 minutes to reach the last four, defeating Maximo Gonzalez and Nicolas Jarry 6-2, 6-4. The Dutch will meet Santiago Gonzalez and Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi for a place in the final.