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Murray/Venus Edge Through In Tokyo To Boost Turin Bid

Top seeds upset in Antwerp, Stockholm
October 18, 2023
Michael Venus and Jamie Murray created 12 break points in the Tokyo first round.
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Michael Venus and Jamie Murray created 12 break points in the Tokyo first round. By ATP Staff

Jamie Murray and Michael Venus defeated the Japanese team of Takeru Yuzuki and Seita Watanabe to begin their crucial campaign at the Kinoshita Group Japan Open Tennis Championships on Wednesday. The British-Kiwi pair earned a 6-2, 6-7(8), 10-3 victory against the home favourites but were pushed to a Match Tie-break despite creating 12 break chances.

Murray and Venus are in 10th place in the Pepperstone ATP Live Doubles Teams Rankings. The team is just 85 points behind the current eighth-placed pair, Americans Nathaniel Lammons and Jackson Withrow, who are also into the Tokyo quarter-finals.

Marcelo Arevalo and Jean-Julien Rojer, currently in ninth place, also advanced on Wednesday at the ATP 500 with a 6-4, 6-4 victory against Austrians Alexander Erler and Lucas Miedler.

In addition to Murray and Venus, two other teams advanced to the quarter-finals via Match Tie-breaks. Australians Rinky Hijikata and Max Purcell edged Japan's Shintaro Mochizuki and Rio Noguchi 5-7, 7-6(4), 10-5, and Ben McLachlan and Yoshihito Nishioka won an all-Japanese matchup against Taisei Ichikawa and Masamichi Imamura 6-3, 6-7(5), 10-7.

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Tsitsipas Brothers Advance In Antwerp
Opening Wednesday's play on centre court at the European Open, Petros Tsitsipas and Stefanos Tsitsipas knocked out fourth seeds Matwe Middelkoop and Andreas Mies 7-5, 6-3. The Greek brothers converted on both of their break points in the match while saving the only break chance against them.

Ariel Behar and Adam Pavlasek scored an even bigger upset on Court 1, taking out top seeds Santiago Gonzalez and Edouard Roger-Vasselin 6-3, 6-7(2), 10-7. Despite the defat, Gonzalez and Roger-Vasseline remain in strong position to qualify for Turin in sixth place in the Pepperstone ATP Live Doubles Teams Rankings.

Top Seeds Out In Stockholm
The top seeds at both of this week's ATP 250s are out in the first round. At the BNP Paribas Nordic Open, Argentines Maximo Gonzalez and Andres Molteni were beaten by Andrey Golubev and Denys Molchanov, 7-5, 3-6, 10-7. The Kazakh-Ukrainian duo of Golubev and Molchanov saved six of eight break points in the upset win on centre court.

Second seeds Nikola Cacic and Mate Pavic were also dismissed in the opening round by Yuki Bhambri and Julian Cash, who opened play on Court 1 with a 6-4, 6-3 upset of their own.

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