Bhupathi, Paes score; Bopanna falls

Fifth seeds Leander Paes and Radek Stepanek ended Yuki Bhambri and Michael Venus’ impressive run in their first Grand Slam to reach the men’s doubles quarterfinals at the Australian Open here on Sunday.

Seventh seeded Rohan Bopanna and Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi exited after losing to 12th seeds Treat Huey and Dominic Inglot in the third round.

The Indo-Czech pairing of Paes-Stepanek comfortably beat the unseeded Bhambri-Venus combine 6-3, 6-2 in just over an hour at the Margaret Court Arena.

Paes-Stepanek now take on 13th seeds Michael Llodra and Nicolas Mahut. The French team shocked No 2 seeds Alexander Peya of Austria and Bruno Soares of Brazil in another third-round match.

Huey of the Philippines and Inglot of Britain sent the India-Pakistan pair of Bopanna and Qureshi packing, winning 6-4, 7-6 (7-1) in an hour and 19 minutes.

Paes later turned up for his opening mixed doubles tie with Daniela Hantuchova of Slovakia. They advanced with a 7-5, 4-6, 10-7 win over Croatian Ajla Tomljanovic and Australian James Duckworth.

Mahesh Bhupathi, who is already out of the men’s doubles, began well in the mixed doubles alongside Elena Vesnina of Russia.

The eighth seeds edged past Spain’s Arantxa Parra Santonja and David Marrero 6-7 (3), 6-4, 10-5.

Bhupathi and Vesnina will play Paes and Hantuchova in what will be an interesting match-up in the next round.

In junior girls’ singles, Katie Boulter of Britain defeated  Dhruthi Tatachar Venugopal of India 6-3, 6-3 in the first round.

However, Dhruthi won her doubles match with Snehadevi Reddy.

The Indian pair beat Japan’s Nozomi Ohya and Yukina Saigo 6-2, 6-7 (4), 10-5.

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