Thursday, March 23, 2023 | Daily Newspaper published by GPPC Doha, Qatar.


Italy’s Camila Giorgi hits a forehand against Kaia Kanepi of Spain (not pictured) during day two of the Miami Open at Hard Rock Stadium. (USA TODAY Sports)

Giorgi hangs on to edge past Kanepi in Miami

Italy’s Camila Giorgi survived a near nightmare third-set collapse to edge Estonian Kaia Kanepi 7-6(4) 6-7(4) 7-6(4) in a marathon first-round match at the Miami Open on Tuesday.Giorgi appeared in complete control when she took a 5-0 third set lead but the veteran Kanepi refused to go away, erasing two match points to draw level at 5-5.Despite issuing 14 double faults and at one point throwing her racket in frustration, Giorgi stayed composed in the final set breaker, smacking a forehand winner on match point to end the three-hour, 32-minute slugfest.Giorgi will next face 14th-seeded Victoria Azarenka, who like the other 32 seeded players at the tournament received a first-round bye.Elsewhere, Belgian Elise Mertens brushed aside American Alycia Parks 6-1 6-4 to set up a second-round clash with eighth-seed Daria Kasatkina.Mertens, a three-time Grand Slam champion in doubles, put her net skills to good use to see off Parks and set up a meeting with the crafty Kasatkina.“She has a very good forehand and she can get a lot of balls back,” Mertens said of the Russian. “She’s number eight seed for a reason. I’m just going to try to focus on myself.” Canadians Rebecca Marino and Katherine Sebov, Ukrainian Marta Kostyuk and China’s Wang Xiyu were among the other first-round winners at the WTA 1000 event.Defending champion Swiatek pulls out of Miami OpenIga Swiatek has withdrawn from the Miami Open due to a rib injury, the world number one and defending champion said yesterday.Top seed Swiatek was due to begin her campaign against American Claire Liu in the second round today after being given a bye in the first round.“You know that in and after Doha I was struggling with a strong infection,” Swiatek said.“I was allowed to play, but a strong episode of tough cough led to a rib injury. We were trying to handle it and continue to play as long as it was safe for me. We were analysing the data in the last days and my doctor prepared my diagnosis.“Unfortunately, I’m still feeling a lot of discomfort and pain and I can’t compete.”Swiatek added that the injury would also keep her out of Poland’s Billie Jean King Cup qualifier against Kazakhstan in mid-April.“I will keep you updated about where I play next, because it depends on my process of recovering and the recommendation of my medical team,” Swiatek added.

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