With a weekend of classic Davis Cup action been and gone, of course there was doubles action at the very forefront of British Tennis fans’ minds as Andy and Jamie Murray teamed up to defeat the Japanese in Birmingham. But there was more than just Davis Cup doubles action this week:
— Jonny O’Mara (@Jonny_OMara) March 5, 2016
Just the one title this week but it was won in superb fashion by Scott Clayton and Jonny O’Mara. Their run to the final was no picnic. After coming through a first round encounter with a Brazilian pair, they faced the fourth seeds Jorge Hernando-Ruano and Ricardo Villacorta-Alonson. After winning in straight sets their reward was a clash with the number one seeds, another Spanish pair.
This was a much closer affair and was decided on a nail biting match tie-break. Clayton and O’Mara battled hard and eventually booked their place in the final with a 12-10 victory. After two tough matches they faced a fellow unseeded pair in the final and never looked like suffering defeat, eventually winning in straight sets to each claim their first title of the year.
The Special Mention
— Team GB (@TeamGB) March 5, 2016
They may have only played one doubles match this week but the Murray Brothers deserve a special mention for their escapades in the Davis Cup. If we have proved anything over the last twelve months it is that Davis Cup ties often hang on the result of the doubles and having the world number two, Jamie fighting your corner is a massive boost.
Jamie and Andy paired up once again and continued to show why they would be a phenomenal force if they were to ever pair up properly on the doubles circuit as they comfortably dispatched their Japanese counterparts in three straight sets.
With a Davis Cup takeover on the ATP Tour there was just a single challenger event to wet our appetite. Luckily, a number of Brits decided to congregate in France. Unfortunately the British challenge in Quimper went out with a whimper.
Fresh from last week’s superb title the Skupskis were back in action, this week as the second seeds. Unfortunately their efforts from the previous week told as the jaded pair fell in the first round to the wildcard pairing of Sergiy Stakhovsky and Michal Mertinak.
The Skupskis were pipped to the top seeding by Jonathan Marray and his partner Rameez Junaid. However, they fared no better as they were also upset in round one by Lukas Lacko and Uladzimir Ignatik. In fact, the only Brit to win a match was Darren Walsh and his French partner. However, Lacko and Ignatik proved themselves to be a pain in the backside for the Brits as they knocked out Darren in the next round.
Heather Watson and Johanna Konta decided to rest their new doubles partnership this week but Jocelyn Rae and Anna Smith were in action in Monterrey. Unfortunately their woes on the WTA circuit continue as they were comprehensively beaten 6-2 6-0 in their opening tie.
Over in Kuala Lumpur, Naomi Broady was back in doubles action but could not replicate her singles form alongside rising Turk, Cagla Buyukakcay. The pair put up a brave fight but were just edged out 11-9 in the deciding tie break by Katarzyna Piter and Maryna Zanevska.
The largest congregation of Brits saw five of the boys travel to Canada where Ed Corrie and Liam Broady both reached the singles semi-finals. Unfortunately, Corrie was unable to replicate that feat in the doubles, losing in the first round alongside fellow Brit, Dan Smethurst.
There was more luck in the first round for 2nd seeds Liam Broady and Luke Bambridge who lost just two games as they progressed to the quarter-finals. However, they were upset there by the hugely talented Canadian teenagers, Felix Auger-Aliassime and Denis Shapovalov.
Fourth seeds Lloyd Glasspool and Filip Peliwo lived up to their seeding by reaching the semi-final but were upset by Sebastian Fanselow and Adrian Sikora, who had also defeated the first seeds in round one.
— Point To Prove (@PointToProve_) March 1, 2016
Over in Brazil, Tara Moore and Conny Perrin could not build on their recent good form as the pair were comprehensively beaten by the Argentinean pair of Guadalupe Perez Rojas and Nadia Podoroska in the semi-finals.
Unseeded Manisha Foster and the Italian Deborah Chiesa produced a comprehensive 7-5 6-1 upset of the four seeds to reach the semi-finals in France. However, they were then routinely dispatched in the semi-finals. It is worth noting that none of the pairs that beat Lloyd, Tara and Manisha went on to win the title.
Continuing to fight out in Spain, Amanda Carreras and her long-term partner Alice Savoretti once again demonstrated signs that they were improving. After scrapping through their first round match, the pair came within a few points of upsetting the second seeds, eventually falling 10-7 in the deciding tie-break.
The only other Brit to record a win on the doubles circuit was Billy Harris alongside Demian Raab. However, the fourth seeds were halted by an injury which forced them to withdraw from their quarter-final clash.
In Australia, Freya Christie, Katy Dunne, and Lisa Whybourn could not translate their superb singles form onto the doubles court, although they put up one heck of a fight. Freya and Katy lost in a tense opening encounter, losing 5-7 7-6(3) 11-13 in the deciding tie-break. It was even tougher on Lisa who came very close to eliminating the first seed but also fell in a tie-break, 10-4.
In fact, tight final tie-break losses were the story of the week for our Brits as Mirabelle Njoze came agonisingly close to upsetting the fourth seeds alongside her Swedish partner, losing 12-10.
Finally Joe Cooper and Laura Deigman were in action in Turkey and Egypt respectively, but neither was able to claim a set in the first round losses.