Daniel Nestor (Toronto) and Serbian partner Nenad Zimonjic are through to the quarter-finals of the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament in Rotterdam, the Netherlands following an opening 6-4, 3-6, 10-5 victory over Canadian-American pair Adil Shamasdin (Toronto) and James Cerretani.
Shamasdin and Cerretani were lucky losers, earning their spot in the doubles main draw thanks to the withdrawal of Brit Jonathan Marray and Russian Dmitry Tursunov. It was a close match between the two pairs, with Shamasdin and Cerretani actually earning more service break opportunities than their higher-ranked opponents. But Nestor ultimately came out on top over his fellow Canadian and Davis Cup hitting partner, as he and Zimonjic won the important points and took the match tiebreaker for the triumph.
The No. 3-seeded duo of Nestor and Zimonjic will next face Frenchmen Michael Llodra and Nicolas Mahut.
Toronto's Daniel Nestor and French partner Kristina Mladenovic won the Australian Open mixed doubles title Sunday over India's Sania Mirza and Romanian Horia Tecau 6-3, 6-2.
The 58-minute victory marks the fourth mixed title for the 41-year-old Nestor and second for his team in the last three grand slams.
He and Mladenovic won the Wimbledon title last summer after finishing runner-up at the French Open eight months ago.
"We've been playing our best tennis here," said Nestor. "It's great to win this title.
"I have what I believe is the best partner in mixed. Kristina helps me out and I have to cover less of the court — that's good at my age."
Nestor now owns three Melbourne mixed titles, winning with Elena Likhovtseva in 2007 and repeating three years ago with Slovenian Katerina Srebotnik. Nestor and Mladenovic beat Mirza and Tecau at Wimbledon last summer on the way to their title together.
Nestor's team beat the sixth seeds with five aces 14 winners, 24 unforced errors and four breaks of serve.
Mladenovic converted on a third match point as she sent a passing shot past Tecau to take the victory.
"Australia's a great place to be at this time of year," Nestor said of a match played in 26 Celsius summer conditions, "It's certainly a bit colder in Canada.
"Leaving home at around Christmas time is always a blessing."
Nestor was accompanied on his trip by his family, which had to return home this week for school.
The Canadian will travel to Tokyo for next week's Davis Cup tie with Japan.
The unseeded pairing of Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic have been crowned the men’s doubles champions at Apia International Sydney.
The Canadian-Serbian duo, who have combined for three Grand Slam doubles titles and both previously been ranked No.1 in the tandem game, defeated third seeds Rohan Bopanna of India and Pakistan’s Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi in a pair of tiebreaks, 7-6(3) 7-6(3).
The win is Zimonjic’s 50th doubles title, and an incredible 83rd for Nestor, who also won in Brisbane last week with Poland’s Mariusz Fyrstenberg.
“(Feeling) pretty good. We accomplished our goal playing a few matches, which is important. You know, we picked up kind of where we left off playing good. You know, it’s competitive as ever, doubles, and anything can happen obviously. We’re happy about our start (to the season),” Nestor said.
The experienced duo of Nestor and Zimonjic, with the combined age of 78, threatened to take the decisive break in the ninth game when Bopanna pushed a forehand volley well wide of the alley.
But when faced with the sudden-death deuce point, the “Indo-Pak Express” survived, holding serve for 5-4.
The set progressed to a tiebreak, and Nestor and Zimonjic immediately wrested control, scoring a mini-break for 3-1 when Bopanna double faulted and coming out on top of a volley exchange to put the set almost beyond doubt at 4-1.
They made sure of it, wrapping up the opening set in 46 minutes.
The match continued before a large, atmospheric crowd on Ken Rosewall Arena, which relished the competitive nature of the points and the fact that the two teams could not be separated.
Games went on serve throughout the set, and the 12th game appeared to be going the same way when Bopanna and Qureshi moved ahead 40-15. But two points later, when Nestor played a delightfully-disguised lob for a winner, the Canadian-Serbian pair had brought up a championship point at deuce.
Bopanna saved it with a sharp-angled volley, and to another tiebreak the finalists headed.
Once there, it was Nestor and Zimonjic again benefitting from poor serving from the third seeds.
They snatched the mini-break for a 4-2 lead after a Qureshi double-fault, and after two powerful first serves from Zimonjic brought up three match points, they clinched the title on their first after a Bopanna double fault.
“It’s nice to start (the season) with a title. We didn’t need much of playing together that we get to know each other because we play three-and-a-half years together,” Zimonjic said.
“It’s nice that we continued. Last two tournaments that we played we won; this is the third tournament. It’s a great thing that we managed this.”
WIN at Brisbane International - Australian Open Series!
Daniel Nestor (Toronto) and Polish partner Mariusz Fyrstenberg are one of four teams still standing at the Brisbane International following a 7-5, 4-6, 10-8 quarter-final victory over Aussie wild cards Matthew Ebden and Thanasi Kokkinakis on Friday.
Nestor and Fyrstenberg, the No. 2-seeded duo, withstood 15 aces and a strong fight from their opponents in the 75-minute match. In the match tiebreaker, Nestor and Fyrstenberg were able to hit 89 per cent of their first serves compared to Ebden and Kokkinakis’ 44 per cent, which ended up being a difference-maker. And despite being behind in the total point count 65 to 64, Nestor and Fyrstenberg were able to eke out the triumph.
The semifinals will now pit the Canadian-Polish pair against No. 3 seeds Jamie Murray of Great Britain and John Peers of Australia.
Nestor, the only man with more than 900 career doubles wins, achieved some of his best career results with the big-hitting Serb at his side.
Daniel Nestor will go back to the future in 2014.
The doubles king from Toronto will team with former partner Nenad Zimonjic next season in hopes of erasing memories of a poor 2013 campaign.
“I’m playing next season with Zimonjic,” Nestor told The Canadian Press at his last tournament stop in Vienna. “We’ll see how it goes.
“Of course there’s nothing permanent in doubles these days,” he joked. “But we feel it would be a great injustice if we never played again considering how well we played over three years together.
“We both want to see if we still have an magic.”
Nestor, the only man with more than 900 career doubles wins, achieved some of his best career results with the big-hitting Serb at his side. The pairing accounted for three of the eight Grand Slam titles held by the record-setting Nestor.
He and Zimonjic claimed back-to-back Wimbledon crowns during a golden run on the grass in 2008-09, with the pair also combining for the French Open trophy in 2010.
Nestor and Zimonjic parted company at the end of 2012, capping their time together with a title at the year-end World Tour Finals in London.
Nestor then teamed Max Mirnyi of Belarus, winning eight titles together — including two French Opens — over two seasons.
Nestor has had a variety of partners this season and has won only a single title, teaming with Leander Paes at Winston-Salem the week before the U.S. Open.
As a result, there will be no appearance at the year-end final for Nestor this year. The veteran’s season will end after next week’s Paris Masters.
Nestor is teaming this week in Basel with Davis Cup teammate Vasek Pospisil of Vernon, B.C., after losing last week’s Vienna final with Austrian partner Julian Knowle.
“The season has certainly been frustrating for sure,” Nestor said. “But there have been good times also. We’ve played good Davis Cup matches and the past two months have not been so bad for me, just some poor luck.
Nestor and Pospisil were up a set and a break against the Bryan brothers in the third round of the U.S. Open before losing. In Shanghai, Nestor and Paes had two match points against former partner Robert Lindstedt and Pospisil but couldn’t capitalize.
“If you can win these kind of matches you get on a roll. It’s very frustrating to lose them but it’s nothing tragic, “Nestor said. “I had years when my teams were winning them.”
The Canadian is hoping to make the next two weeks count for him on court.
“My ranking (18th in doubles) is where it is because of my play,” he said. “There have been times I’ve played well and times when I’ve not been good enough.
“I’ll be finished (with this season) soon, there’s no London for me. I just want to play well and then enjoy life (until next season).”
With an Olympic gold medal and eight Grand Slam titles in men’s doubles tennis, Toronto’s Daniel Nestor has claimed the sport’s highest honours.
But for the 41-year old, teaming up with Vancouver’s Vasek Posipsil to put Canada on the verge of a first ever berth in a Davis Cup final is right up there among the greatest moments in his career.
Nestor and Pospisil hung on for a 6-7 (6), 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (5), 10-8 victory over Serbia’s Nenad Zimonjic and Illja Bozoljac on Saturday.
“It’s just as good as a gold medal or Wimbledon for sure,” said Nestor, who is usually reserved in media interviews but walked into the post-match press conference with a big smile on his face.
Daniel Nestor became the first doubles player to reach the 900 match wins milestone, as he teamed up with fellow 40 year old Leander Paes for a 6-4, 6-4 win over Paul Hanley and John Peers on Wednesday night in the Winston-Salem Open quarter-finals.
“It’s obviously special being able to play as long as I have and fortunately winning a lot,” said the Canadian. “I always had great partners, and it’s nice to share this moment with another great player in doubles over the years. It’s a special evening.”�
Nestor, who made his ATP World Tour debut as a 16 year old, has compiled a 900-358 match record and 80 titles over his illustrious career. He notched his first win in 1993 in Auckland, alongside Sebastien Lareau.
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It's not often that a player gets honoured in a tournament while he is still playing. But that changes when you have been playing the tournament for 25 years in a row.
Canadian veteran Daniel Nestor was honoured with a plaque and a bottle of 1989 Chateau Grand-Puy-Lacoste red wine from current world no. 1 Novak Djokovic, in a ceremony on Court Central in Montreal during the ongoing Rogers Cup.
Nestor is the first player to play in one event for 25 years in a row in the Open Era.
Nestor commented on the occasion, "It's been a long time on tour and at this tournament and I feel fortunate to play as many years as I have."
The Canadian has won eight Grand Slam doubles titles and has 896 career doubles win.
He also peaked in the top 60 in singles. This week he is playing with Robert Lindstedt and they will meet Jerzy Janowicz and Dominic Inglot, in the second round.