Kubot/Melo To Face Pavic/Marach For Wimbledon Title
Thirteen matches down, one to go. Lukasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo stayed perfect on the grass on Thursday, ousting top seeds Henri Kontinen and John Peers 6-3, 6-7(4), 6-2, 4-6, 9-7 in the Wimbledon semi-finals.
Melo/Kubot will now put their grass-court streak to the ultimate test: the Wimbledon doubles final. In Saturday's championship, the fourth seeds will meet 16th seeds Oliver Marach of Austria and Mate Pavic of Croatia, who outlasted Croatians Nikola Mektic and Franko Skugor 4-6, 7-5, 7-6(4), 3-6, 17-15 in four hours and 35 minutes.
It will be a maiden Grand Slam final for both teams, but both Melo and Kubot have won Grand Slam titles with different partners. Melo, playing with Ivan Dodig, won the 2015 Roland Garros doubles title and reached the 2013 Wimbledon doubles title match. Kubot won the 2014 Australian Open doubles crown playing with Robert Lindstedt.
Kubot/Melo, who joined forces full-time at the start of the season, have been nearly unstoppable since forming. On Saturday, they will go for their fifth tour-level title of the year after winning ATP World Tour Masters 1000 crowns in Miami (d. Monroe/Sock) and Madrid (d. Mahut/Roger-Vasselin) and picking up grass-court titles at the Ricoh Open (d. Klaasen/Ram) and the Gerry Weber Open in Halle (d. Zverev/Zverev).
Marach and Pavic will be playing in their first Grand Slam final as a team and as individuals. But they also enjoyed grass-court success before The Championships. Marach/Pavic were finalists at the MercedesCup in Stuttgart (l. to Murray/Soares) and at the inaugural Antalya Open in Turkey (l. to Lindstedt/Qureshi).
Regardless of Saturday's outcome, Melo will have a reason to celebrate. With current doubles No. 1 Kontinen out of Wimbledon, Melo will surpass him and return to No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Doubles Rankings on Monday when the new rankings are released. Melo, currently World No. 3, spent 26 weeks at No. 1 from November 2015 to June 2016.