For the second weekend in a row, Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos lifted a winner’s trophy.
After taking the title at the doubles’ draw in Buenos Aires last week, this Sunday they defeated qualifiers Salvatore Caruso and Federico Gaio to win the Rio Open presented by Claro for the first time.
The match wasn’t as easy as the stats indicated and last year’s US Open finalists had to overcame a 7-4 at the match tie-break to win their third title together (they also won in Canada, last year). The final score was 6/4, 5/7 and 10/7.
“Winning here in Rio means a lot to us. It’s always special to win an ATP 500 event and it gives us a lot of confidence. That’s a confirmation that we are on the right way and that things that we’ve been trying to improve are working out and we are getting the results”, said Granollers.
“It was not an easy match today, they were playing on a high level and serving super well, specially on the second set and it made our lives difficult. We hold on on the match tie-break and it’s amazing to win a tournament like that”, said the Spaniard.
En route to win their third ATP title together, Granollers and Zeballos needed to win two matches on Sunday due to rain on Saturday. With the victory, the Spaniard and the Argentinian will receive $114,200 and each earn 500 ATP Doubles Ranking points.
The title is another incentive for Zeballos to focus on his doubles career _he is currently number four in the doubles’ ranking.
“I had a beautiful singles’ career and never thought I could be where I am now playing doubles. I don’t regret anything and I gave my best playing singles, but I was still far from being at the Top 10. On the other hand, playing doubles I’m much better than I ever expected. I’m still young, I’m focused and I have a few challenges ahead, like playing more Grand Slams finals and maybe getting to a Finals at the end of the season”, said the Argentinian who won one singles’ title and reached a career-high 39th position.
For Caruso and Gaio the second place was not a bad result in the end. They only decided to team-up to play the Rio Open when they arrived in Rio. And they finished the week having played their first ATP Tour final together after stunning second seeds Lucasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo by 6/3, 3/6, 10/4 in the semi-finals.