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Sports

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PPI
December 6, 2017

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I am not a clay court player: Aqeel Khan

KARACHI: Pakistan’s top tennis player Aqeel Khan, who lost his first round match to Spain’s fourth seed Pere Riba in the ongoing Serena Hotels ITF Futures Tennis Tournament in Islamabad, said he is not a clay court player.
Riba defeated Pakistan’s top tennis player 6-2, 6-2 to confirm his place in the second round. “He (Riba) is a good player. He played well. I also created chances but he was a better player, at least on clay court,” Aqeel told PPI.
“I feel the tournament should have been organised either on grass or hard court. Clay court has never been preferred by Pakistan players. I objected to the selection of the court. I am hopeful that we will opt against clay court when an international tournament is organised in our backyard next time,” he added.
“I think all of our players are not comfortable on clay court. Clay courts would be the last option for me to play on if I was asked,” he said.
Meanwhile, Muzammil Murtaza and Samir Iftikhar progressed into the second round. Muzammil proved too good for Russia’s Dmitry Myagkov recording a 6-3, 6-2 victory.Samir breezed past compatriot Usman Rafique in straight sets, recording a 6-0, 6-2 victory.
In other matches, Kristian Lozan (RUS) [3] beat Malik Abdur Rehman (PAK) 6-0, 6-1; Peter Goldsteiner (AUT) [7] beat Mudassar Murtaza (PAK) 6-0, 6-2; Roy Hobbs (SGP) beat Fariduni Bekhodur (TJK) 6-2, 6-1; Gleb Alekseenko (UKR) beat Luka Pavlovic (FRA) 3-6, 6-4, 7-5; Oleg Besednikov (RUS) beat Yousaf Khalil (PAK) 7-6 (3), 6-3; Alexandr Lebedyn (UKR) [8] beat Anton Chekhov (RUS) 6-2, 7-5; Kelsey Stevenson (CAN) beat Vadim Alekseenko (UKR) 6-4, 7-6 (9); Ivan Nedelko (RUS) [1] beat Shahzad Khan (PAK) 6-3, 6-3; and David Perez Sanz (ESP) [2] beat Ivan Ponomarenko (RUS) 6-3, 6-2.

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