Bryans Aim For Sixth Monte-Carlo Doubles Crown
For their third consecutive match at the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters, Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan were forced into a Match Tie-break. But once again, the Americans prevailed, moving within one victory of a record sixth title in the principality of Monaco.
The twins came from a set down to keep their record unblemished against Simone Bolelli and Fabio Fognini with a 4-6, 6-3, 10-7 victory on Saturday in 84 minutes on Court Rainier III, the main show court.
“We love what we do and we really enjoy this tournament,” said Mike Bryan on-court. “By winning we can stay one more day and try to win our sixth trophy here.”
Bryan and Bryan, who recently captured glory at the Miami Open presented by Itau, are now a triumph away from a 38th ATP World Tour Masters 1000 title and their 116th trophy overall. Only one other player, Tomas Smid, won four doubles titles in Monte-Carlo.
The 39-year-olds, who turn 40 in eight days’ time, extended their FedEx ATP Head2Head series lead against Bolelli and Fognini to 5-0, despite losing their first set against the duo (and second overall) since the 2013 Australian Open semi-finals.
In working their way back to 4-5 in the first set from 0-4 down, the brothers carried momentum in the second set, which included one service break of Bolelli’s serve in the fourth game. Although they couldn’t convert three set point chances on Bolelli’s serve when leading 5-2, Mike Bryan closed out in the next game. In a tense Match Tie-break, they opened up a 7/4 advantage. The repeat of the 2015 Monte-Carlo title match ended when Fognini missed a backhand volley at 7/8 and then hit a forehand return into the net on match point.
The fourth-seeded Bryans will now prepare for a championship match against this year’s Australian Open champions, Oliver Marach and Mate Pavic, who have won three tour-level titles in 2018, or defending champion Rohan Bopanna of India and his partner, France’s Edouard Roger-Vasselin.