06:55 PM GMT November 09, 2014
Ivan Dodig and Marcelo Melo won their opening Group B match at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals on Sunday. The seventh seeds defeated second seeds and two-time former titlist Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic 6-3, 7-5 in 77 minutes.
Dodig and Melo got off to a quick start, winning the first three games. Big serves were backed up by well-placed groundstrokes down the middle of the court, which dented Nestor and Zimonjic’s defence. Ready to cross for a point-winning interception, Dodig and Melo were able to maintain their lead to seal the 30-minute opener.
In a competitive second set, Dodig saved two break points in the second game and Melo won a deciding point deuce at 3-4. Nestor got himself out of trouble at 5-5, 15/40, with two aces. But the Canadian then handed Dodig and Melo the crucial break when he struck a double fault.
Nestor and Zimonjic, who are competing together for the final time this week, won the 2008 and 2010 titles at the season finale. The 42-year-old Nestor also won the 2007 (w/Knowles) and 2011 (w/Mirnyi) trophies. Zimonjic made his season finale debut in 2005 and reached the final (w/Paes).
Dodig and Melo, who went 3-0 in round robin play last year prior to losing to eventual champions David Marrero and Fernando Verdasco, are now 28-19 on the season. Should they clinch the title this week, it would be their first team trophy of the year.