CHENNAI (TIP): Chest thumps are back. This time though, it’s with partner No. 99, South Africa’s Raven Klaasen.
Leander Paes and Klaasen enjoyed a good chemistry as they sent Mahesh Bhupathi and Saketh Myneni packing 1-6, 6-1, 10-7 in a dramatic encounter to make the doubles semifinals on Thursday.
Incidentally, Leander Paes has won the doubles title here on six occasions, five with Mahesh. Paes won his last doubles crown here with Serbia’s Janko Tipsarevic in 2012.
The first set saw Bhupathi-Myneni run amok, as they broke the Indo-South African duo in the second and sixth games. The second set was a mirror image of the first, save this time it was Paes-Klaasen pair in charge of the proceedings.
The super tiebreaker was peppered with just the right amount of drama. At 3-3, Paes thundered down a blinder of a crosscourt shot to go up 4-3. At 9-6 in Paes-Klaasen’s favour, a Myneni serve landed deep, well past a lunging Klaasen.
“It was a topsy-turvy match. It was more mental rather than tactical.Credit to Mahesh for playing the way he did in spite of not having a full season,” said Paes.
Lopez falls on debut Feliciano Lopez hardly had the spice in his game on his Chennai Open debut, going down to qualifier Aljaz Bedene in straight sets.
Out-of-sorts Lopez, despite being cheered on by the fans, was undone by Bedene, going down 4-6, 4-6. The other Spaniard, Roberto Bautista Agut, though, had it easy against Peter Gojowczyk, winning 6-3, 6-2 in another second-round match.