Jonny moves closer to perfect start to 2013

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SHEFFIELD’S Jonny Marray has had the best possible start to the new tennis season as he bids for a place in the final of the Qatar ExxonMobil Open today.

Wimbledon doubles champion Marray and partner Dustin Brown, from Germany, followed up their first round win on New Year’s Day by beating Mikhail Youzhny and Jonathan Erlich in straight sets (7-6 (3) 7-6 (6)) in yesterday’s quarter-final.

The victory sets up a semi-final match against tournament second seeds Filip Polasek and Julian Knowle later today.

Marray, who plans to play with Brazilian Andre Sa in this month’s Australian Open, has struck up a good partnership with the charismatic Brown.

The worst that the 32-year-old Marray can now do is to leave Doha with a half share of $16,480 and 90 ranking points from the ATP World Tour 250 Series tournament.

However, victory today would see Marray and Brown competing for the $57,850 top prize and 250 ranking points.

On New Year’s Day the pair made light work of Lukas Lacko and Albert Ramos as they eased through 6-2 7-5.