Murray and Djokovic face off in Doha final

Fri Jan 6, 2017 3:11pm EST
 
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(Reuters) - Andy Murray and champion Novak Djokovic will go toe-to-toe in the Qatar Open final after the world's top two players laid down their markers for the 2017 season.

World number one Murray swept aside Czech third seed Tomas Berdych 6-3 6-4 to record his 28th consecutive victory and will be targetting a sixth title in succession on Saturday.

Djokovic, who was deposed as world number one by Murray in November and was beaten by the Scot in their last showdown -- in the title match of the 2016 season-ending ATP World Tour Finals - will be hoping to avoid the hiccups he faced against Spaniard Fernando Verdasco in Friday's semi-final.

The Serb saved five match points to stay alive before eventually subduing Verdasco 4-6 7-6(7) 6-3.

(Reporting by Pritha Sarkar, editing by Toby Davis)

 
Tennis - Qatar Open - Men's singles semi-finals - Fernando Verdasco of Spain v Novak Djokovic of Serbia - Doha, Qatar - 6/1/2017 - Djokovic celebrates after winning. REUTERS/Ibraheem Al Omari