Doubles Take looks at all of the recent action on the ATP Tour under the roof.
This year's ATP Masters 1000 campaign wraps up with one of the most prestigious events of the fall in Paris. It’s usually the last regular-season event of the ATP calendar, but there’s one more slated for next week in Sofia, Bulgaria. Last year, to the delight of the home crowd, Frenchmen Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut claimed the title.
They’re back to defend their title this year and are seeded fifth among plenty of other worthy challengers for the top prize. The draw is headlined by Robert Farah and Horacio Zeballos, followed by US Open winners Mate Pavic and Bruno Soares. COVID-19 protocols knocked out Australian Open champs Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury before they even struck a ball.
BACK IN THE WINNERS’ CIRCLE
Over the past several years, Sander Gille and Joran Vliegen have claimed dozens of titles together at the Futures and Challenger levels, with that success carrying over to the main tour last year when they won three of four finals.
They’ve had some solid results since tennis has returned, including a career-first quarterfinal at a major at the US Open. At the Astana Open in Kazakhstan, everything came together perfectly for the Belgians over the course of the week as they claimed their first championship of 2020.
Facing Max Purcell and Luke Saville—who’ve had a similar career arc—in the final, Gille and Vliegen took the match in straight sets over the Aussies. They continue to aim for a strong finish to 2020, and already through to the second round in Paris.
SOMETHING SPECIAL ABOUT VIENNA
Even when they weren’t playing together on a regular basis and would just team up for whatever reason, Marcelo Melo and Lukasz Kubot always found success in Vienna. It’s where they won their first title as a team back in 2015—even though they were near the top of the game with other players. They came back to successfully defend their championship a year later under similar circumstances.
Regular partners since 2017, the duo reached the final of the tournament last year. 2020 got off to a slow start with one title amid some early losses before the shutdown. Since tennis has resumed, they finally seem to be back on track during the indoor stretch, coming off a final in Cologne, Germany, and now, finding their winning formula once again in Vienna.
Campeaaaaaaaaao !!! !! Muito feliz, semana incrível. Obrigado a todos pela energia positiva, ao Kubi, ao nosso time e aos meus patrocinadores!!!! Vaaaamo q vaaamo. . . Champions !!! Thanks a lot everyone, was amazing week for us!!! Another here em Vienna !!! . . @centauroesporte @itambe @bancobmg @volvocars @vossworld @orfeucafes @cbtoficial @foxtonbrasil @atptour @asicsbrasil @headtennis_official #somostodosgirafa #melokubot #bolsaatleta
Melo and Kubot denied Jamie Murray and Neal Skupski a first title together with a straight-sets win in the final, bringing their overall record in the Austrian capital to 18-3 with three championships.