Venus and Peers drop opening match at ATP Finals in London
New Zealand’s Michael Venus and his Australian partner John Peers have lost a tight opening match at the ATP Finals in London.
The 6th seeded Antipodean duo have been beaten 7-6 (2) 7-5 by 4th seeds Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos in a match lasting 1 hour 42 minutes. It’s a similar result to their previous encounter at the Rome Masters in September where Venus and Peers lost 7-6 7-6.
There was little between them and Venus and Peers will rue the fact they could only convert one of their six chances to break serve. Venus and Peers had two break points in the first set that they couldn’t convert, and it went to a tie break which Granollers and Zeballos won comfortably.
Venus and Peers got on top early in the second set after breaking Granollers in the third game for a 2-1 lead. But Peers served a double fault to be broken back immediately. Games went with serve until the 12th game when on their fourth match point Zeballos broke Peers again with a terrific backhand winner.
Venus and Peers served 12 aces to one in the match. The loss will mean they probably have to win their two remaining Group matches to qualify for the semi-finals.
They are the Bob Bryan Group and play top seeds Mate Pavic (Croatia) and Bruno Soares (Brazil) and 7thseeds, Austrian Jurgen Melzer and Frenchman Edouard Roger-Vasselin in their remaining Group matches.
The top two teams from each of the two Groups advance to the semi-finals.
Venus and Peers have won three ATP titles this year, at the ATP 500 tournaments in Dubai and Hamburg and an ATP 250 title in Antwerp.
Venus is playing at the 02 Arena for the fourth straight year after he reached the semi finals with American Ryan Harrison in 2017 and played the last two years with South African Raven Klaasen where they finished runner up last year.