Strong performances cheer Melo on for Newport semi-final

Melo tries to reach his 68th doubles final on the ATP Tour

Photo: Archive

Newport (USA) – The good performances of the first rounds of the ATP 250 in Newport encouraged Marcelo Melo for the semi-final of the traditional tournament played on the grass courts of the Tennis Hall of Fame. Seeds of the week, Melo and the South African Raven Klaasen have still not lost a set and faced this Saturday noon (Brasília time) the North Americans Robert Galloway and Alex Lawson.

“One more step, reaching that semi-final. We had two days between the debut and that second game. And now he’s looking to repeat the same solid form that we played in the first rounds,” said Marcelo Melo after the quarter-final victory ahead of Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime and Frenchman Benjamin Bonzi by 6/4 and 6/2. In their debut, they beat Serbian brothers Ivan and Matej Sabanov by 6/2 and 6/4.

Aged 38 and from Minas Gerais and currently 44th in the rankings, Marcelo Melo has 35 doubles titles on the ATP circuit and is aiming for the 68th final of his career. In Newport he only played the 2011 edition and was a semi-finalist in a Brazilian partnership with André Sá. In the current season, Melo has already played two ATP finals, the first in January, in Adelaide, with the Croatian Ivan Dodig. On clay in Lyon, the native of Minas Gerais was vice-champion alongside Argentinian Maximo Gonzalez.

If Melo and Klaasen reach the final of the tournament, the opponents will be Americans William Blumberg and Steve Johnson, who beat Indian Ramkumar Ramanathan and Australian John-Patrick Smith by a 6/4 double on Friday.

Elmer Hayward

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