By Glenys Furness

  • Andy Murray & Fleming lose epic to Isner & Roanic
  • Jamie Murray & Bruno Soares edge into second round

INDIAN WELLS, USA – Andy Murray & Colin Fleming lost out in an enthralling doubles match involving the big serving John Isner. Jamie Murray & Bruno Soares reunited for the first time since the Australian Open.

Andy Murray teamed up with Fleming and entered the doubles as a wildcard pairing. Murray & Fleming faced Isner & Milos Raonic in the first round. The Brits kept close the the American/Canadian, but a double fault by Fleming helped Isner & Raonic edge the first set. The second set saw both teams stay close and eventually a tiebreak ensued. The Brits came out on top of this to level the match and send it to a match tiebreak. This could have gone either way as both teams had match points, eventually though the American/Canadian just edged the match 10-8.

Jamie Murray is back with Soares, as the Australian Open champions are playing their first tournament together since winning the first slam of the year. As fourth seeds they were expected to win this, and the first set was relatively easy as they broke to claim the set 6-4, the second set saw their opponents Treat Huey & Martin Klizan step things up and force a tiebreak. Murray & Soares found themselves on the wrong end of the set s Huey & Klizan levelled the match. Once again a match tiebreak would settle to winners. Murray & Soares were pushed very closed but just edged the match 11-9.

In Puebla (Mexico) and James Ward was seeded seventh here. The first round saw the Brit against Federico Gaio. The Italian is ranked 60 places lower than the Brit, and the first set clearly showed the ranking differential as Ward made light work and delivered a breadstick. The second set was a different matter as the Italian started to gain a foothold in the match. Breaking the Brit once was enough for Gaio to force the decider. Ward held on and returned the favour in the final set, breaking and serving out for the match, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3. In his second round match Ward faced Eduardo Struvay, a qualifier from Colombia. The Brit played well but the Colombian was on a roll, and defeated Ward in straight sets 6-3, 6-3 to bring an end to his campaign. Incidentally Struvay went on to reach the final.

In Jonkoping Neal and Ken Skupski were seeded third and the first round opponents were Aslan Karatsev & Frank Moser. The Brits managed to create break point opportunities on the unseeded pair serve, however Karatsev & Moser held on and finally broke the Skupski brothers once to seal the set 6-3. The second set was much the same, although the Brits were still playing hard, Karatsev & Moser broke them twice to take the win.

Also in the doubles here were Jonny Marray, who partnered with Rameez Junaid and were seeded second. They were drawn against a wildcard Swedish pairing of Milos Sekulic & Markus Eriksson. The Brit/Aussie pairing showed why they are seeded two here as they served up a breadstick in the first set. The second saw the Swedes come back strongly and eventually take the set 6-4 to level and send the match into a match tiebreak. The seeds were not to have this their own way as the Swedes edged the match 10-7.

In Santiago and Darren Walsh teamed up with Michael Linzer from Austria. They faced a team from Argentina and Domincian Republic in the form of Maximiliano Estevez & Jose Hernandez-Fernandez. The Brit/Austrian team played very well, however the Argentine/Dominican team broke in both sets to just edge the match 7-5, 6-4.

Next week Brits are in action in Indian Wells, Guadalajara & Drummondville


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