By Glenys Furness

  • Joe Salisbury & Neal Skupski take the title in San Diego
  • Ken Skupski & Jonny O’Mara lift the trophy in Sofia
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA, USA – Joe Salisbury & Neal Skupski defeated top seeds in the ATP event. Meanwhile in Bulgaria brother Ken Skupski teamed up with Jonny O’Mara, the unseeded Brits took the title in Sofia.

 

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In San Diego Joe Salisbury and Neal Skupski teamed up together and were the top seeds. In the first round the Brits drew Ariel Behar & Gonzalo Escobar. Despite being the top seeds, the Brits had not regularly played together so were slow to get off the mark. Behar & Escobar broke easily in the first set and took the lead. Salisbury & Neal Skupski regrouped in the second set and forced a tiebreak. The Brits edged the tiebreak and levelled up the match. The final set was a match tiebreak. Salisbury and Neal Skupski secured the break needed and took the win 2-6, 7-6(5), 10-5.

The quarter-final saw the Brits against Brandon Nakashima & Sem Verbeek. The top seeds dominated the first set as the American/Dutch pair struggled to get games on the board. Salisbury & Neal Skupski flew through the first set with barely a sweat. The second set was much closer. Nakashima & Verbeek stayed closer to the top seeds, eventually the top seeds secured the break of serve to take the victory 6-1, 7-5.

In the semi-final the top seeds were against Jackson Withrow & Jordan Thompson. The Brits secured a break of serve in the first set to take the lead. Withrow & Thompson stayed with the top seeds, with neither pair securing a vital break of serve. The American & Australian pair forced a tiebreak, which the top seeds dominated to move into the final 6-4, 7-6(3).

The final saw Salisbury & Neal Skupski against John Peers & Filip Polášek. The Australian/Slovak pair stayed toe to toe with the Brits and forced a tiebreak in the first set. The top seeds dominated the breaker and took the lead. The second set saw Peers & Polášek break serve of the Brits and level up the match. The ensuing match tiebreak saw Salisbury & Neal Skupski obtain the break of serve and claim the title 7-6(2), 3-6, 10-5.

 

Sofia Doubles

Ken Skupski & Jonny O’Mara teamed and entered the ATP event in Sofia and were unseeded. The Brits were up against Dimitar Kuzmanov & Alexander Donski. The Bulgarians started better and dominated the first set to take the lead. The Brits regrouped in the second set and secured a break of serve right at the end to level up the match. The final set was a match tiebreak, the Brits edged ahead and took the victory 2-6, 7-5, 10-7.

In the quarter-final the Brits were against the fourth seeds John-Patrick Smith & Luke Saville. The Brits secured the break of serve in the first set and took the lead. Smith & Saville regrouped in the second set and dominated to level up the match. Another match tiebreak ensued and the Brits edged through to make the semi-final 6-3, 2-6, 10-8.

The semi-final saw the Brits against Matwé Middelkoop & Roman Jebavý. The Dutch/Czech tried to stay with Ken Skupski & O’Mara but the Brits took the break of serve and the lead. The second set was dominated by the Brits as Middelkoop & Jebavý just could not get into the match. The Brits moved into the final 6-3, 6-1.

In the final the Brits were against the third seeds Philipp Oswald & Oliver Marach. The Austrians were on paper the favourites for the victory due to ranking. Ken Skupski & O’Mara had other ideas. The Brits broke early in the first set and took the lead. The second set was a little closer as the Austrians tried to pull back level. Eventually the Brits broke the serve of the third seeds and took the title 6-3, 6-4.

 

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Doubles Round Up

Dan Evans with Fabio Fognini were defeated by Andreas Mies & Austin Krajicek in the first round in San Diego 6-1, 3-6, 10-7.

Jamie Murray with Bruno Soares were defeated by Federico Delbonis & Marcelo Arévalo in the first round in San Diego 6-3, 6-3.

Dom Inglot with Jonathan Erlich were defeated by Matwé Middelkoop & Roman Jebavý in the quarter-final in Sofia 6-2, 7-5.

Tom Hands & Harry Wendelken were defeated by Blake Ellis & Renta Tokunda in the first round in Falun 6-2, 3-6, 10-6.

Julian Cash with Vasilios Caripi were defeated by Daniel Cukierman & Francesco Vilardo in the first round in Pretoria 6-4, 3-1 (RET).

Felix Gill with Rrezart Cungu were defeated by Mariano Navone & Juan Pablo Paz in the first round in Skopje 6-4, 6-4.

Sean Hodkin & Millen Hurrion were defeated by Raphael Calzi & Alex Knaff in the first round in Forbach 6-2, 4-6, 10-5.

Luke Johnson & Ben Jones defeated Maxence Beauge & Arthur Bouquier in the final in Forbach 6-3, 6-2.

Giles Hussey & Adam Jones were defeated by Luis Britto & Fernando Yamacita in the first round in Cancun 7-6(5), 6-3.

Emily Webley-Smith with Rutuja Bhosale were defeated by Vera Lapko & Lidziya Marozava in the first round in Nur Sultan 6-2, 4-6, 10-1.

Eden Silva with Jessika Ponchet were defeated by Robin Anderson & Amandine Hesse in the first round in Le Neubourg 4-6, 6-4, 10-6.

Alicia Barnett & Olivia Nicholls were defeated by Sarah Beth Grey & Estelle Cascino in the quarter-final in Le Neubourg 0-0 (RET).

Sarah Beth Grey with Estelle Cascino were defeated by Robin Anderson & Amandine Hess in the final in Le Neubourg 6-3, 7-6(2).

Anna Popescu & Soumeya Anane were defeated by Yvonne Cavelle-Reimers & Angela Fita Boluda in the quarter-final in Lisbon 6-2, 6-0.

Next week Brits play in Indian Wells, Mouilleron, Napoli, France, Portugal, Czech Republic, Qatar, Mexico, Bulgaria, USA, Tunisia & Egypt.

 

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