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Bhupathi-Knowles dislodges Bryan brother's supremacy

New Delhi, Thu, 24 Jan 2008 NI Wire

India's Mahesh Bhupathi coupling with Mark Knowles of Bahamas entered into the semi-finals, after dislodging the Down under supremacy of top seeds Bryan brothers, Mike and Bob, of the US in a hard fought thrilling three-set quarter-final match, of the Australian Open men's doubles in Melbourne on Wednesday.

Sixth-seeded pair of Bhupathi and Knowles fashioned a major setback to the brother’s duo after posting a 6-3, 5-7, 7-6 (7-5) sweating upset victory against the Americans in an enthralling encounter that lasted for almost two and a half hours.

The Bryans had played in all the four Aussie Open men's doubles finals since 2004 and were the reigning two-time Aussie Open champions after being the runners-up here in 2004 and 2005.

Bhupathi and Knowles will now fight it out with eighth seeded Israeli pair of Andy Ram and Jonathan Erlich in the semi-finals. Erlich and Ram stormed into the semis registering a one-sided 6-4, 6-1 win over Frenchmen Marc Gicquel and Fabrice Santoro in their quarter-final clash.

The other semi-final will pit seventh seeds Arnaud Clement and Michael Llodra of France against unseeded South Africans Jeff Coetzee and Wesley Moodie. India’s Bhupathi and Sania Mirza are already in the mixed doubles semi-finals where they will meet eighth seeds Nathalie Dechy of France and Ram.

The significant facet of Bhupathi and Knowles victory was that they did not come up with a single unforced error and converted winners in three of the six break points they gained. Their winning percentage on the first serve was 73 percent with a total of 112 points won by them in comparison to Bryans’ 107.

Indians are going great at the moment as eighth seed India’s Yuki Bhambri also stormed into the boys’ singles quarter finals after trouncing Tadayuki Longhi of Japan 6-1, 6-3 in just under an hour. He now faces third seed Britain’s Daniel Evans.

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