- Jamie Murray & Neal Skupski claim title in ATP 250 Sofia
- Brits drop two sets en route
- Just miss out on automatic qualification for London
SOFIA, BULGARIA – Jamie Murray & Neal Skupski were second seeds and entered the final ATP event of the year, hoping to qualify for the ATP World Tour finals.
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Jamie Murray & Neal Skupski entered the ATP 250 event in Sofia, the final event on the ATP main tour. The Brits were the second seeds and a good showing could see them still qualify for the end of the year World Tour Finals.
In the first round the seeds were against Divij Sharan & Igor Zelenay. The Brits got off to a great start, breaking the Indian/Slovakian to take the first set. However, Sharan & Zelenay regrouped in the second set. Murray & Skupski were broken by the Indian/Slovak and the match was level. In the match tiebreak the Brits edged ahead with a mini break and Sharan & Zelenay could not get back on terms. The seeds moved into the next round 6-3.3-6.10-6.
In the quarter-final the seeds were against Radu Albot & Artem Sitak. The Moldovan/New Zealander were no match for Murray & Skupski. The Brits broke Albot & Sitak in the first set to take the lead. In the second set the seeds totally dominated and took the match in straight sets 6-4, 6-2.
The semi-final pitched the seeds against Fabrice Martin & Hugo Nys. Murray & Skupski went toe to toe and forced a tiebreak. The seeds took the breaker fairly easily to move into the lead. The second set was much like the first, however it was Martin & Nys who dominated the breaker and levelled up the match. In the match tiebreak, the seeds secured the mini break and took the match 7-6(4), 6-7(2), 10-4.
The final was to pitch the second seeds against the top seeds Jurgen Melzer & Édouard Roger-Vasselin. If the Brits could win the match they would qualify for the ATP World Tour finals in London. After playing their semi-final the top seeds withdrew to hand the title to the Brits. Unfortunately, due to this and not actually playing the match the Brits finished the season in ninth place. The Brits will be alternates in London, but not in the top eight.
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Doubles Round Up
Jonny O’Mara & Ken Skupski were defeated by Jurgen Melzer & Édouard Roger-Vasselin in the quarter-final in Sofia 6-4,6-2.
Lloyd Glasspool with Alex Lawson were defeated by Jamie Cerretani & Luca Margaroli in the first round in Bratislava 7-6(3), 4-6, 12-10.
Luke Bambridge with Nathaniel Lammons were defeated by Teymuraz Gabashvili & Dennis Novikov in the final in Cary 7-5, 4-6, 10-8.
Aidan McHugh with Christian Langmo were defeated by Felix Corwin & Marat Deviatiarov in the first round in Sharm El Sheikh 6-4, 4-6, 11-9.
Alastair Gray & Siddhant Banthia were defeated by Arnaud Bovy & Gauthier Onclin in the semi-final in Sharm El Sheikh 6-4, 6-4.
Anna Popescu with Alicia Rusova were defeated by Shavit Kimchi & Maya Tahan in the first round in Heraklion 3-6, 6-4, 10-5.
Tara Moore with Emina Bektas were defeated by Jamie Loeb & Erin Routliffe in the quarter-final in Orlando 6-3, 6-2.
Next week Brits play in London, Spain, Italy & Estonia.
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