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Pro Media & News

Ram & Salisbury to play in year-end

championship match in Turin

Victoria Chiesa  |  November 20, 2021
<h1>Ram &amp; Salisbury to play in year-end</h1>
<h2>championship match in Turin</h2>
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American Rajeev Ram and his British partner Joe Salisbury advanced to the doubles final at the season-ending Nitto ATP Finals thanks to a 4-6, 7-6(3), 10-4 comeback victory over top seeds and world No. 1s Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic in Saturday's semifinals. 

 

Entering the match with a 1-4 record against the Croatian team this year, Ram and Salisbury came from a set down for the second time this week to keep their unbeaten record in tact. After losing the first set, where they were broken early at 1-1, Ram and Salisbury protected serve well in the second set, where neither team faced a break point; findining another gear in the ensuing tiebreak, the No. 2 seeds won four straight points from 3-3 to force a winner-take-all deciding match tiebreak to 10 points.

 

The duo was never under threat there, winning six straight points and nine of the first 11 to seal a spot in the final as a pair for the first time. 

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“It felt really good to win, especially in this tournament, the biggest ATP tournament of the year,”  Salisbury said in victory. “The way we did it, coming from a set down and not playing our best. We were really up against it and we showed a lot of character, a lot of fighting spirit to stick in there [and] believe that we could turn it around and play our best tennis at the end.”

 

Ram and Salisbury will play No. 3 seeds Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut of France for the season-ending trophy after the French pair knocked off Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos in the other semifinal, 6-3, 6-4. The final will be a rematch of the thrilling group stage match that Ram and Salisbury won on Wednesday by a 6–7(7), 6–0, 13-11 final score, in which the French duo had a pair of match points in the deciding tiebreak.

 

Having finished as runner-up alongside Raven Klaasen at this tournament in 2016, Ram bids to be the first American in three years to win the doubles title at the Nitto ATP Finals, while Salisbury hopes to be the first British man to hoist the doubles trophy. Herbert and Mahut look to win their second title at the event, having also triumphed in 2019. 

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