Gille/Vliegen & Herbert/Mahut Claim Doubles Wins Friday
Sixth seeds Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut survived a scare to battle past Jonathan Erlich and Lloyd Harris 6-3, 3-6, 7-5 to reach the third round at Roland Garros on a day when other rivals fell.
The French duo, which won the title in 2018 (d. Marach and Pavic), were backed by a vocal Parisian crowd as they won 79 per cent (50/63) of first-serve points, breaking to love in the final game to advance.
They will face Robin Haase and Jan-Lennard Struff in the third round after the pair shocked 10th seeds John Peers and Michael Venus 6-4, 7-6 (5). Haase and Struff have teamed this week for the first time and broke the Australians twice on the way to victory.
Last year’s Australian Open champions won only 23 per cent of points (3/13) on their second serve and failed to save any of the three break points faced. Their opponents will now face Benoit Paire and Romain Arneodo.
Elsewhere, 14th seeds Sander Gille and Joran Vliegen comfortably overcame Americans Tennys Sandgren and Austin Krajicek to set a third-round clash with Pablo Andujar and Pedro Martinez. The Belgium team, who won the title at the Singapore Tennis Open (d. Ebden and Smith), hit eight aces, winning 91 per cent of their first-service points.
The ninth seeds Kevin Krawietz and Horia Tecau also marched to victory as they beat Yen-Hsun Lu and Yoshihito Nishioka 6-3, 6-2. They returned well, winning 50 per cent of first-serve points on their opponents’ serve and will now play seventh seeds Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares. Krawietz is looking for a third straight Roland Garros title, having won the previous two with fellow German Andreas Mies, who is recovering from right knee surgery.
Dutch duo Wesley Koolhof and Jean-Julien Rojer, seeded 11th, moved into the third round as they defeated Dominik Koepfer and Emil Ruusuvuori 6-4, 7-6 (3), saving both break points they faced. Koolhof reached the semi-finals at Roland Garros last year (l. to Krawietz and Mies) with former partner Nikola Mektic.