Nestor is in doubles semi

TERRY KOSHAN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:45 AM ET

Daniel Nestor, the lone Canadian remaining in the Rogers Cup, will play in a doubles semi-final this afternoon at Rexall Centre.

But, outside of a few hardcore fans, does anyone care?

Nestor would like to think so, but it's a tough sell.

"I think tennis needs to start promoting its players better, whether it's doubles or singles, other than the really famous ones, such as (Andy) Roddick, (Rafael) Nadal, (Roger) Federer," Nestor said. "Seventy-five, 80% of the world's population (that plays tennis) plays doubles. It's a little bit strange it doesn't get more attention.

"We're a little bit confused."

Nestor's match yesterday in the afternoon was a good example of what he was talking about. Nestor and partner Mark Knowles of the Bahamas, the fourth seeds at the tournament, rallied to beat No. 7 Simon Aspelin and Todd Perry 2-6, 6-3, 1-0 (2). Yet there was little more than a scattering of fans in the stands at centre court.

On a positive note, Nestor was not heckled during the match, as he was earlier this week during a singles match.

Nestor, 33, and Knowles have won four tournaments this season and have earned $539,160 US in prize money, so it's not as though they are just scratching by.

Today, they will have a large challenge when they meet the No. 1 duo in the world, American twins Bob and Mike Bryan.

The other doubles semi-final pits the team of MartinDamm and Leander Paes against the duo of Paul Hanley and Kevin Ullyett.

But no matter what the level of fan interest may or may not be, Nestor is more than comfortable with where his game stands right now.

"Mark and I, we don't have huge weaknesses," Nestor said. "We're pretty solid. I feel like I'm playing just as well as I ever have in doubles."

Nestor made a joke at his own expense when he was asked whether there is anything specific that has allowed him to be a very good doubles player.

"Yeah, lack of movement," Nestor said with a smile.

"That's why I don't play singles. Singles is more about long rallies, being athletic and physical out there. Doubles is more precision, angles. It's a totally different game."


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