Pe'er feeling comfy in Dubai security zone

Denied the chance to play in Dubai two years ago, Pe'er powers back beating out Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez of Spain 6-4, 6-1.

February 15, 2011 17:41
1 minute read.
Peer beats out Sanchez in opening singles

Peer beats out Sanchez 311. (photo credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS)

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — When most players at the Dubai Championships finish their matches, they mingle in the clubhouse eating and chatting. For Shahar Pe'er, it's back to a guarded compound where she watches movies with her father Dov.

It could be worse for Pe'er. She was denied a visa to play in Dubai two years ago because of anger over Israel's three-week military offensive in Gaza. This week she has a security detail and is confined to her hotel room but insists she feels welcome and comfortable in the Gulf city.

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Despite early Aussie exit, Pe’er hits career-high ranking

The tight security — including metal detectors outside the stadium — has not hurt her performance thus far. The 11th-ranked Pe'er won her doubles Monday and her opening singles Tuesday, beating Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez of Spain 6-4, 6-1.

Pe'er jumped out to 3-0 in the first set only to see Martinez Sanchez come back to tie it at 4. Pe'er went up 5-4 and broke Sanchez to take the set. The Spaniard, weakened by a flu and coughing during the match, couldn't keep up in the second set.

"Obviously, I played good last year. When you go back to a tournament that you played good, you want to repeat that," Pe'er said.

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