| Novak Djokovic, in action, on Friday |
London: India’s Mahesh Bhupathi and Rohan Bopanna knocked out defending champions Max Mirnyi and Daniel Nestor to qualify for the semi-finals of the ATP World Tour Finale, here on Friday.
The fifth-seeded Indian pair fought tooth and nail for a 7-6 (5), 6-7(5), 10-5 win against the second-seeded Belarussian-Canadian pair in their final Group B match that lasted almost two hours.
Leander Paes and his Czech partner Radek Stepanek have already secured a place in the last-four stage and they play their last Group A match against top seeded American pair of Bob and Mike Bryan tomorrow.
The Indians saved five breakpoints to win the first set in a tie-break but Mirnyi and Nestor pushed the match to a match tie-breaker by winning the second set, which was fought fiercely for 56 minutes.
Bhupathi and Bopanna zoomed to a 9-4 lead and converted their second match point to secure a semi-final berth.
With Friday’s win, Bhupathi and Bopanna now lead the head to-head record against Nestor and Mirnyi 3-2.
In singles, Novak Djokovic completed a 100 percent round-robin record with a 6-2. 7-6 defeat of Czech Tomas Berdych booking his place in the semi-finals.
The Serb followed his defeats of Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Andy Murray with another clinical performance in front of a 17,000 sell-out crowd at the O2 Arena guaranteeing top spot in Group A.
Djokovic, who will end a second successive year at the top of the rankings, dominated the opening set against an opponent he had beaten in 10 of their previous 11 meetings, breaking serve twice.
He also broke early in the second set but Berdych hit back immediately and pushed the Serb all the way thereafter.
The Czech suddenly began to force his opponent out of position with some ferocious baseline hitting.