Patriotism was on full display last week—from Chicago to China—and Doubles Take is here for it.
SMELLS LIKE TEAM SPIRIT
The second edition of the Laver Cup took place in Chicago over the weekend, and once again Team Europe won the title. Doubles played a major role as Team World rallied and even took the lead on Sunday.
And this year, Roger Federer’s all-star doubles adventure saw him partnering with Novak Djokovic, where there was a bit of extra hitting and missing.
THE (NATIONAL) TIES THAT BIND
What a week it was for players partnering with their countrymen and women. All five tournaments, between both tours, were won by teams comprised of players from the same nation. Some of them even got to celebrate in front of their home crowds.
At the Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo, Makoto Ninomiya and Miyu Kato of Japan went a step further than their runner-up finish in Hiroshima the week prior when they defeated Czechs Andrea Hlavackova and Barbora Strycova in the final.
The Australian duo of Monique Adamczak and Jessica Moore triumphed in Guangzhou, China, rallying to beat Danka Kovinic and Vera Lapko in a match tiebreak.
South Korea’s Ji-Hee Choi and Na-Lae Han captured their first career doubles title at the Korea Open, beating sisters Shu-Ying Hsieh and Su-Wei Hsieh in the final.
In St. Petersburg, Italians Matteo Berrettini and Fabio Fognini knocked out the defending champions Roman Jebavy and Matwe Middelkoop for their first title together.
And in Metz, France, Nicolas Mahut and Edouard Roger-Vasselin showed how tough they are on their home turf with their second title together there—and fourth overall for each of them—when they took out Ken and Neal Skupski in the championship match.
A LOOK AHEAD
The men are catching up to the women this week with their first tournaments in Asia. In Shenzhen, No. 1 seeds Ben McLachlan and Joe Salisbury will face Marcin Matkowski and Nicholas Monroe in their opener. Marcus Daniell and Wesley Koolhof are the second seeds. Top seeds Ivan Dodig and Mate Pavic are through to the quarters in Chengdu, China, while the No. 2 and No. 3 seeded teams of Julio Peralta/Horacio Zeballos and Divij Sharan/Artem Sitak are already out.
The WTA has another Premier event this week, the Wuhan Open in China. The top teams are all there, with two of them—Gabriela Dabrowski/Yifan Xu and Wimbledon finalists Nicole Melichar/Kveta Peschke—already through to the quarters. And in Tashkent, number-one seeds Irina-Camelia Begu and Raluca Olaru have gotten off to a strong start with a straight-sets win in their first match.
Follow Van on Twitter: @Van_Sias