Knowles, Mertinak move into the semis
Bahamian touring pro Mark Knowles and his men’s doubles partner Michal Mertinak, of Slovakia, are seeded third at the Regions Morgan Keegan Championships in Memphis, Tennessee, and after an impressive victory yesterday, they are now into the semi-finals.
They eliminated Marcelo Melo and Bruno Soares, 3-6, 6-3 and 14-12 yesterday. They will now await the winners of the Daniel Nestor/Max Mirnyi and Ryan Harrison/Andy Roddick match that will take place today.
This is the second consecutive semi-final appearance for Knowles and Mertinak. They was eliminated from theSAP Open last week by Falla Alejandro and Xavier Malisse in the semi-finals, 6-4, 5-7 and 4-10. At the Australian Open, the elimination of Knowles and Mertinak came in the second round. They also fell in the quarter-finals of the year-opening tournament in Sydney.
In an earlier interview, Knowles explained that it is tough changing partners but that he looks forward to playing with Mertinak.
“It is always tough changing partners, playing with someone for so long especially when you had so much consistency with playing with that one partner, but I think Michal brings a lot of good things to the court,”said Knowles.”We just have to get used to each other. The more matches we play, the better we will get. We weren’t able to gel immediately at the Australian Open so we are looking to come together here on this indoor swing and win a lot of matches and hopefully win some events.”
Also playing at theRegions Morgan Keegan Championships was Bahamian-born Ryan Sweeting. Sweeting, who is currently playing under the American banner, was eliminated by Janko Tipsarevic, 6-0 and 7-6(7), in the first round of men’s singles. Tipsarevic will now play Andy Roddick in the second round.