Qureshi Wins Thai Open With New Partner

October 6, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

By Parvez Fatteh, Founder of http://sportingummah.com, sports@muslimobserver.com

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Pakistani tennis star Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi formed a triumphant pairing with Oliver Marach of Austria to go on to win the Thailand Open men’s doubles tennis tournament. Qureshi and Marach defeated the German pair of Michael Coleman and Alexander Waske to clinch the title. The final score was 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (7-5).

Qureshi and Marach were the top seeded team in the tournament, and they gathered enough momentum to lose only one set during the entire tournament. Qureshi said winning in Thailand was a great experience and he expressed solidarity with the flood victims of Pakistan and Thailand.

“I feel very excited and great. Oliver is a great player. He’s been in the Top Ten for so many years. It’s my pleasure playing with him this week. I love coming back to Thailand, where I won Futures and Challengers also,” he told the official website of the Thailand Open.

“On behalf of myself and the Pakistanis at home, we all support the flood victims because Pakistan has been hit by floods as well as Thailand. I wish all the Thai people and the country all the patience and courage to overcome the natural disaster,” he added.

While this was a great accomplishment for Qureshi and his new partner, Qureshi is expected to return to playing with his regular doubles partner, India’s Rohan Bopanna, with whom he has formed the celebrated pairing dubbed “The Indo-Pak Express.”

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Muslim Women With Another Dismal Grand Slam

September 1, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

By Parvez Fatteh, TMO, Founder of http://sportingummah.com, sports@muslimobserver.com

2011-08-30T220145Z_592763968_LM2E78U1P6X01_RTRMADP_3_TENNIS-OPENIn what has become a disappointing pattern, the Muslimas of the professional tennis world have once again experienced miserable results at a Grand Slam tennis tournament. This time around it is the U.S. Open, which began this week. India’s Sania Mirza seemed to carry the highest hopes of the bunch, with her WTA singles ranking on the uptick, most recently reaching number 63in the world. But she did not receive the smoothest of draws, facing the number 23 seed Shahar Peer of Israel in the first round. Mirza started off well, taking the first set 7-6 (7-5) from her former doubles partner. But that was it, as Peer stormed back to take the next two sets, and the match, 6-3, 6-1. This concluded what has been a downer of a month for Sania, as she lost in the first round of her last event, the Texas Open. And, she has also spent the last few weeks refuting claims by the Pakistan Tennis Federation that she demanded a $25,000 appearance fee earlier this year for a charity exhibition match for the Lahore flood victims.

Aravane Rezai, of France, had most recently had a run of good play. She made the finals of the Texas Open the previous week before losing to Sabine Lisicki. But because of Hurricane Irene, Rezai had to fly to Cleveland, Ohio and then drive to New York for the U.S. Open. And perhaps all those hours on the road took a toll on Aravane, as she went down meekly to number 26 seed Flavia Pennetta in the first round 6-4, 6-1.

The only spot of good fortune at this year’s U.S. Open amongst Muslim women came via Uzbekistan’s Akgul Amanmuradova, who dispatched of Tamira Paszek in the first round 6-4, 6-2. And things opened positively on the men’s side, as Pakistan’s Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi and his Indian doubles partner Rohan Bopanna, opened their tournament with a 6-1, 2-6, 6-2 over Americans Robbie Ginepri and Rhyne Williams. Qureshi and Bopanna finished as runner-ups in last year’s U.S. Open, and they are the fifth-seeded team in this year’s tourney.

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