Doubles Take looks back at the action down in South Beach, plus previews this week’s tournaments.
MIAMI’S TWICE AS NICE
At the Masters tournament in Indian Wells, Calif., a few weeks ago, Bob and Mike Bryan—playing an event at that level for the first time since Madrid last year, when Bob went down with a hip injury—fell in the second round to Dominic Inglot and Franko Skugor.
That’s a difficult draw for any team as Inglot and Skugor won three titles a year ago. The Bryans surely must have realized that and didn’t hit the panic button as they headed into the Miami Open as the defending champions.
Already winners in Delray Beach this year, the all-time greats made it two-for-Florida, claiming the title once again with a straight-sets win over Wesley Koolhof and Stefanos Tsitsipas in the final.
Afterward, Bob Bryan—only months removed from a career-threatening injury—let it be known how much this victory meant to him.
SUNSHINE DOUBLE UNLOCKED
It’s still early in the season, but right now, top-15 singles stars Elise Mertens and Aryna Sabalenka are looking like the doubles team to beat.
The Indian Wells champions picked up their second title in a row, beating Australian Open winners Samantha Stosur and Shuai Zhang in straight sets in the Miami Open final.
The Belgian-Belarussian duo topped the third- and fifth-seeded teams on their way to the final, and now have a 12-2 record for the year.
A LOOK AHEAD
There are two tournaments on the WTA calendar this week. The clay-court season gets underway in Charleston, S.C., at the Volvo Car Open, where Nicole Melichar and Kveta Peschke are the top seeds, followed by Lucie Hradecka and Andreja Klepac.
The hard courts are still in play at the other event this week in Monterrey, Mexico. There, Japan’s Miyu Kato and Makoto Ninomiya—who finished 2018 strong with a final and title during the Asia swing—are the top seeds. Lara Arruabarrena and Dalila Jakupovic are seeded second.
The men, who would be usually be contesting the Davis Cup quarterfinals post-Miami, are off this week due to the team competition’s revised format.
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