Doha, Qatar, 22 February 2024 | Leigh Rogers

Doha, Qatar

Alexei Popyrin has charged into his third career ATP singles semifinal – and his first on hard courts since February 2021.

The 24-year-old Australian scored an impressive 6-4 6-4 victory against world No.21 Alexander Bublik in the quarterfinals at an ATP 250 tournament in Doha.

“I’m really happy with how I dug deep in this match,” Popyrin said. “It was not easy with the wind and he’s not an easy player to play against.”

This is Popyrin’s 11th career win against a top-30 player.

The world No.46 now turns his attention to a semifinal showdown with world No.17 Karen Khachanov, who is the last remaining seeded player in the draw.

Khachanov has won two of their three previous career meetings, however Popyrin triumphed when they last met in October 2023.

In doubles, Australia’s John-Patrick Smith is through to the semifinals alongside his German partner Andreas Mies.

Smith and Mies edged out a 3-6 6-3 [10-8] victory against world No.20 Jean-Julien Rojer and world No.30 Lloyd Glasspool to continue their winning run.

This is world No.67 Smith’s best tour-level result since reaching the semifinals in Sofia last November.

The unseeded Italian combination of Lorenzo Musetti and Lorenzo Sonego await in the semifinals.

Aussies in action – Doha

Men’s singles, quarterfinals
Alexei Popyrin (AUS) d [4] Alexander Bublik (KAZ) 6-4 6-4

Men’s doubles, quarterfinals
[Alt] John-Patrick Smith (AUS)/Andreas Mies (GER) d Lloyd Glasspool (GBR)/Jean-Julien Rojer (NED) 3-6 6-3 [10-8]

Men’s singles, semifinals
Alexei Popyrin (AUS) v [2] Karen Khachanov

Men’s doubles, semifinals
[Alt] John-Patrick Smith (AUS)/Andreas Mies (GER) v Lorenzo Musetti (ITA)/Lorenzo Sonego (ITA)

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Two Australians – Storm Hunter and Ellen Perez – have advanced to the doubles semifinals at a WTA 1000 tournament in Dubai.

World No.3 Hunter and her Czech partner Katerina Siniakova are yet to drop a set this week, securing their semifinal spot with a 7-6(3) 6-4 victory against Japan’s Shuko Aoyoma and Serbian Aleksandra Krunic.

They now play the reigning US Open champions, world No.5 Gabriela Dabrowski and world No.6 Erin Routliffe, for a place in the final.

The other semifinal will feature world No.15 Perez and her American partner Nicole Melichar-Martinez, after they edged out a hard-fought 6-7(1) 6-4 [12-10] victory against French duo Caroline Garcia and Kristina Mladenovic in the quarterfinals.

World No.4 Laura Siegemund and world No.96 Aliaksandra Sasnovich now stand in their way of progressing to their fourth final as a team at WTA 1000 level.

This is a career-best run for both 29-year-old Hunter and 28-year-old Perez in Dubai.

Aussies in action – Dubai

Women’s doubles, quarterfinals
[3] Ellen Perez (AUS)/Nicole Melichar-Martinez (USA) d [WC] Caroline Garcia (FRA)/Kristina Mladenovic (FRA) 6-7(1) 6-4 [12-10]
[4] Storm Hunter (AUS)/Katerina Siniakova (CZE) d Shuko Aoyoma (JPN)/Aleksandra Krunic (SRB) 7-6(3) 6-4

Women’s doubles, semifinals
[3] Ellen Perez (AUS)/Nicole Melichar-Martinez (USA) v Aliaksandra Sasnovich/Laura Siegemund (GER)
[4] Storm Hunter (AUS)/Katerina Siniakova (CZE) v [2] Gabriela Dabrowski (CAN)/Erin Routliffe (NZL)

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