The first significant tournament of the summer is in the books for both tours. Doubles Take looks back.
VIVE LA FRANCE IN MONTREAL
As is the case at the ATP Masters 1000 events, you’ll often see more singles players in the doubles draw. Montreal was no exception, with Juan Martin del Potro and Grigor Dimitrov teaming up and hitting shots like this:
At the end of the day, though, it’s usually the doubles standouts playing for the first-place hardware. This go-around, the title match came down to Nicolas Mahut and Pierre-Hugues Herbert against Rohan Bopanna and Ivan Dodig.
Herbert and Mahut came away with their second Masters title of the year and fifth of their career, taking the match tiebreak, 10-6. The Frenchmen dropped a set in their opener against compatriots (and Top-20 singles stars) Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Lucas Pouille, then defeated the Bryan brothers and Olivier Marach and Mate Pavic in straight sets to reach the final.
Herbert and Mahut often play their best at the biggest events: Of the nine titles they’ve won together, two have been Grand Slams and two have been 500-level tournaments, to go along with the five Masters titles.
Bopanna and Dodig have had success with multiple players all year: This was Bopanna’s fifth final with as many partners, while Dodig was in his fourth final with a third different partner. If this is a new partnership going forward, they’re not off to a bad start, with a semifinal in London and a final in Canada in their first two tournaments together.
WINNING ON THE COURT. OFF THE COURT? WELL…
The summer hard-court swing has been very good to Ekaterina Makarova.
A week after capturing her first singles title in three years, she and Elena Vesnina teamed up and did what they do best—win.
In their first tournament since their title run at Wimbledon, the top seeds in Toronto breezed through the draw, beating Anna-Lena Groenfeld and Kveta Peschke in the final.
The Russians didn’t drop a set all week, and between this run and Wimbledon, have only been pushed to the distance once, in the Wimbledon quarters against Ash Barty and Casey Dellacqua.
All that winning, though, can bring its own separate set of hassles as Vesnina found out when she tried to get to her next destination.
Apparently,you have to come 3 hours before the check in to all flights to USA,I came 1 hour 45 min before the flight,didn't let me check in— Elena Vesnina (@EVesnina001) August 14, 2017
And I missed last available direct flight to CincyAt least I know now that new rule for American boarder— Elena Vesnina (@EVesnina001) August 14, 2017
At least she’ll arrive with some first-place hardware in tow.
A LOOK AHEAD: CINCINNATI
It’s another big week for both tours as they convene in Cincinnati for another Masters/Premier 5 event.
On the men’s side, the field is led by top seeds Henri Kontinen and John Peers, who’ve had a few solid weeks after months of struggling following their Australian Open win. The second seeds are Lukasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo, who are drawn to face Dodig and Bopanna, the seventh seeds in the quarters.
Among the pairings of singles players, countrymen Roberto Bautista Agut and David Ferrer won a first-round match, while the all-American team of John Isner and Donald Young lost to French doubles specialists Fabrice Martin and Edouard Roger-Vasselin.
On the women’s side, top seeds Makarova and Vesnina will be going for their third title in a row. Yung-Jan Chan and Martina Hingis, who have been winning titles at a prolific pace all year, are the second seeds. Chan and Hingis are in the same part of the draw as Groenfeld and Peschke, who defeated them in Canada.
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