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Doubles Take: Davis Cup, Monterrey and more
First-time winners and Grand Slam titlists enjoyed some recent success. Doubles Take looks at all the latest from the pro tours.
Published Mar 09, 2022
TEAM SPIRIT ALL AROUND
This year’s edition of the Davis Cup kicked off over the weekend with action taking place around the globe. The best-of-five format features a doubles tie smack dab in the middle of the singles action, and Grand Slam titlists galore represented their nations.
One of the most anticipated rubbers over the weekend was supposed to be Jack Sock and Rajeev Ram of the US battling “Colombian Power,” aka Robert Farah and Juan Sebastian Cabal. However, Farah couldn’t play and was replaced by Nicolas Barrientos. The Americans won the match in straight sets to send their country through to the finals later on this year.
Five-time major winners Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut also clinched a tie, pushing France through against Ecuador. Recently retired doubles standout Horia Tecau helped Romania win its only point against Spain. Former partners Wesley Koolhof and Matwe Middelkoop—each of whom have been having a solid 2022—reunited to defeat Canada’s Peter Polansky and Brayden Schnur. And perhaps the biggest upset in any of the qualifiers took place in Australia, when former world No. 1 John Peers and Davis Cup debutant Luke Saville fell to Hungary’s Fabian Marozsan and Mate Valkusz.
In all, 12 nations qualified for the next step of the competition.
THAT FIRST-TIME FEELING
Toiling away on the WTA circuit since they left the friendly confines of college, Sabrina Santamaria and Catherine Harrison just accomplished the dream that every player has: winning a first title.
The Americans, who played at University of Southern California and UCLA, respectively, defeated Xinyun Han and Yana Sizikova in the final of the tournament in Monterrey, Mexico. Harrison and Santamaria won their first match in straight sets, then had to battle to survive the second round. A walkover in the semifinals helped keep their legs fresh, which was definitely needed for the championship match. After getting routed in the opening frame, Santamaria and Harrison dug deep to take the second, then clinched the title 10-6 in the match tiebreak.
It was a noteworthy accomplishment, one that could spur each of them on to new heights in the months ahead.
BACK TO THEIR WINNING WAYS
Back during the first Grand Slam of the pandemic, the 2020 US Open, Vera Zvonareva and Laura Siegemund—playing a tournament together for the first time—shocked tennis observers everywhere with a run to the title.
They played together sporadically afterward, but were unable to reach those heights. The Russian-German duo last played together at Wimbledon in 2021, the next-to-last tournament of the year for Siegemund, who was forced off the court due to a leg injury. Making her 2022 tour-level debut at the indoor event in Lyon, France, Siegemund was able to recapture that winning feeling with Zvonareva as they claimed the top prize. The duo was pushed to the brink in the semifinals, then turned around and posted a thorough win in the championship match against Alicia Barnett and Olivia Nicholls in the final.
The victory marked the 11th of Zvonareva’s career, while Siegemund won her seventh title. It’s also the first for either of them since that US Open run a year and a half ago.
Both tours are convening in the dessert for the 1000-level event in Indian Wells, calif. Stay tuned for a preview of the action.