The India-Pakistan tennis duo of Rohan Bopanna and Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi advanced to the semi-finals of the Monte Carlo ATP Masters tournament, shocking second seeds Daniel Nestor and Max Mirnyi in the quarter-finals on Friday.
The 'Indo-Pak Express', seeded sixth in the tournament, overcame a strong fightback from the Canada-Belarus pair in the second set to win 6-1, 7-5 in a little over 74 minutes.
On Thursday, Bopanna and Qureshi, making their first appearance in Monte Carlo, showed little signs of nerves as they beat Eric Butorac and Roger Julien, 7-6 (7/4), 6-3 in 90 minutes to make it to the last eight stage.
Qureshi and Bopanna started the first set impressively against Butorac and Julien, but their opponents kept up the pressure throughout the set despite conceding eight breakpoint opportunities.
While the South Asian pair failed to convert the breakpoints, they took the match into a tie-breaker, during which they set up a mini-break at 3-4 and were soon serving for the set at 5-3.
The second set was a less intense affair as Qureshi-Bopanna broke their opponents' serve after the third game to take a 3-1 lead.
Butorac and Julien, who were semi-finalists at this year's Australian Open, were unable to break back and lost the set 6-3.
The match saw six aces being hit by Qureshi and Bopanna, one less than their opponents, and the Indo-Pak Express saved all four break-points they faced, while Butorac and Julien saved all but one of their 12 break-points, which led to their defeat in the second set.
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