Comeback Colombians: Cabal/Farah Repeat As Rome Champs
Serving at 4-3, 0/40 in the Rome doubles final on Sunday, Juan Sebastian Cabal/Robert Farah did what they've done all week at the Internazionali BNL d'Italia: Stayed calm and rallied.
The Colombians were down 2/7 in the Match Tie-break during their quarter-final against Bob Bryan/Mike Bryan, but saved four match points to reach the semi-finals. On Saturday evening, the longtime Colombian pairing lost the first set 6-2 after only 29 minutes against top seeds Lukasz Kubot/Marcelo Melo, yet recovered to prevail in another Match Tie-break.
On Sunday, however, Cabal/Farah skipped the heroics, beating Raven Klaasen/Michael Venus 6-1, 6-3 in only 59 minutes to repeat as Rome champions and win their second ATP Masters 1000 title.
“I kept repeating to myself and to [Cabal], 'If we come back from this game, we got it. Let's just focus to come back from this game,'” Farah said. “And I feel like when you win tournaments, things go your way. That's the way it is. I don't know what it is, I don't know how to explain it... When it's yours, it's yours.”
Cabal/Farah have now won two of the biggest ATP Tour titles this European clay-court swing, having won the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell last month, and they will head into Roland Garros as one of the favourites to make a deep run.
“We just keep fighting, keep fighting point by point,” Cabal said. “We got the level. We know we can beat anyone and that's what we focus on.”
Cabal/Farah gained two early breaks en route to a 5-0 lead before serving out the opener. Klaasen/Venus rebounded in the second, but the Colombians won eight of the final nine points. The pairing will receive 1,000 ATP Doubles Rankings points and split €284,860.
“Every time you win a 1000 event, it's something very special. There are no words to describe it. To go back-to-back is even more impressive,” Farah said. “It just builds up our confidence as a team.”
Klaasen/Venus were going for their first Masters 1000 team title. They will receive 600 ATP Doubles Rankings points and split €139,020.
“We got off to a somewhat sloppy and slow start and that cost us,” Klaasen said. “We had a few chances, but we obviously aren't happy with how things went out there, and they were too good for us today.”