Ram/Salisbury Dig Deep For Monte Carlo Final Spot
Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury reached a maiden Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters final in dramatic style on Saturday as they overcame Rohan Bopanna and Jamie Murray in an epic semi-final at the ATP Masters 1000 event.
Ram and Salisbury needed a strong Match Tie-break performance to see off their unseeded opponents, who had taken the first set with a solitary break. The top seeds failed to convert the only break point opportunity they carved out in the match but held their nerve to clinch a 3-6, 7-6(4), 11-9 victory.
Ram and Salisbury’s comeback win was powered by a strong serving performance. They won 82 per cent (31/38) of points behind their first delivery overall, according to Infosys ATP Stats.
Bopanna and Murray won 74 points in the match at Ram and Salisbury’s 67 goal were second best at crucial moments on Court Rainier III. Bopanna has a career-high doubles ranking of No. 3 while Murray is a former World No. 1, but the duo was playing as a team for the first time this week.
If the American-British duo can lift its maiden clay-court trophy in Monte Carlo it will cap a perfect week for 29-year-old Salisbury, who became the world’s top-ranked doubles player for the first time on Monday, 4 April. He is only the second British player after Murray to achieve that feat.
Ram and Salisbury will now face Colombians Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah in Sunday’s final after the sixth seeds defeated Marcelo Arevalo and Jean-Julien Rojer, 7-5, 6-3.
Cabal and Farah won 81 per cent (34/42) of points behind their first delivery and saved all four break points they faced to advance after 85 minutes.
The pair has won 19 tour-level titles together and will be aiming to clinch their third Masters 1000 crown together on Sunday. It will be a tough task, though, with Ram and Salisbury leading the Colombians 4-1 in their ATP Head2Head series.