Dubai Tennis: ATP players party hard

The world’s best tennis players took some time out for fun and relaxation last night during the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships at the ATP Players’ Party.

Players mingled with dignitaries and guests and enjoyed the entertainment, which included a performance by a Whitney Houston tribute act, Martina the belly-dancer, Philippe the magician and locally themed attractions.

 Colm-McLoughlin-and-Andy-Murray

Ventzi-Miknas,-Toni,-Tarek-Miknas,-Andy-Murray,-Sinead-El-Sibai

Whitney-Tribute-Act

 Breeda-McLoughlin,-Novak-Djokovic,-Colm-McLoughlin

Salah-Tahlak-with-Roger-Federer

Philippe-the-Magician

Ester-Satarova-and-Tomas-Berdych

Alison-Lee---ATP,-Salah-Tahlak,-Chris-Kermode---ATP

Novak-Djokovic-with-entertainer

 Martina-the-Belly-Dancer-with-Andy-Murray

Feliciano Lopez warmed up for his first match in the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships yesterday with a spin in the Audi simulator in the Tennis Village, before taking a closer look at the Audis on display, including the superb A7 50 TFSI Quattro.

The top seeds all advanced into the second round of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships on Tuesday, with victories for Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray and Tomas Berdych.

Berdych goes Duty Free

Tomas Berdych returns to the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships and took a look around the Tennis Village yesterday before his first match today.

Day one of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships ATP tournament saw over 600 children from local schools participate in this year’s ATP Kids’ Day.

Held at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium, participating students were treated to entertainment, a tennis clinic for all ages and skill levels, and a special visit from top ATP players.

Djoker and the Irishman plan Dubai grab

Four time Dubai champion Novak Djokovic is back to contest the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, his first tournament since winning his fifth Australian Open last month. The world number one arrived ahead of one of his favourite tournaments which starts on Monday, and his first stop was at Burj Al Arab.

For the first time in the history of the event an Irish player will walk through the Irish Village on his way to Centre Court to compete in the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships. Wild card James McGee will meet 45th ranked Joao Sousa of Portugal in the first match of the tournament on Centre court at 2pm today.

Andy Muray cooks up a Dubai storm with Sanjeev Kapoor

 

Halep looks to shoot down rising star Pliskova


Top seed Simona Halep will play rising star Karolina Pliskova in the final of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships on Saturday.

 

Halep turned around her match after dropping the opening set and defeated former champion Caroline Wozniacki 2-6 6-1 6-1, while Pliskova came through a marathon that lasted just seven minutes under three hours with a 6-4 5-7 7-5 victory over Garbine Muguruza.

 

Federer launches Chinese New Year celebrations at Burj Al Arab
 

Tennis beauties dress up for Dubai Open gala

 

Agnieszka Radwanska and Caroline Wozniacki both struggled to win their opening matches.

Radwanska survived a sickness scare to defeat Caroline Garcia 6-3 2-6 6-3,  and Wozniacki eventually overcame a resilient Samantha Stosur 4-6 6-1 7-5 after receiving treatment for a knee ailment.

 Venus Williams shines in Dubai opener; Hantuchova hot

Venus Williams began the defence of her Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships title on Monday with a dominating performance that earned her a 6-1 6-2 victory over Swiss teenager Belinda Bencic.

Daniela Hantuchova followed up her Sunday tournament victory in Pattaya with a battling 7-6(5) 3-6 6-3 victory over Mona Barthel.

Alize Cornet claimed a dramatic 6-0 6-7(6) 6-3 victory over Kirsten Flipkens on Sunday to reach the second round of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships.

Eighth seed Jelena Jankovic struggled before defeating qualifier Timea Babos 6-3 4-6 6-1.

Flavia Pennetta also came through a tough match, fighting off four match points to overcome a gallant challenge by former finalist Julia Goerges and win 2-6 7-6(3) 6-4.

Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova got a taste of Dubai history yesterday when she visited the Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Centre for Cultural Understanding (SMCCU) in the Al Fahidi district ahead of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Tournament this week.

Kvitova, the 2013 Dubai champion, met the Managing Director of the SMCCU Nasif Kayed, who shared some information about Emirati culture.



The Dubai Duty Free Tennis Tournament second seed said “Dubai is one of my favourite destinations for sure. I have won here, and have been here for vacation, so it’s always nice to come here. I feel well, I’ve had a good start to the year, I won a trophy already, so I will try to win another.

Petra also enjoyed traditional Arabic coffee and dates, “I like the dates, they’re very sweet. The Arabic coffee is different, I’m glad I tried it.”



Action in the WTA Tournament begins today, Sunday 15 February, and features defending champion Venus Williams, Petra Kvitova, French Open and WTA Finals runner-up Simona Halep, former Dubai winners Agnieszka Radwanska and Caroline Wozniacki, Brisbane runner-up Ana Ivanovic, Australian Open semi-finalist Ekaterina Makarova and recent Sydney semi-finalist Angelique Kerber. Tickets are still available for every day from the box office.
 

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