Melo/Kubot Reach Third Straight Shanghai Final
Second seeds to meet Pavic/Soares in final
Lukasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo snapped Nicolas Mahut and Edouard Roger-Vasselin’s six-match win streak on Saturday, beating the Frenchmen 6-2, 6-4 to advance to their third straight championship match at the Rolex Shanghai Masters.
The Polish-Brazilian team won 85 per cent of their first-serve points (28/33) and did not face a break point during the 67-minute encounter against last week's Tokyo titlists. Kubot and Melo are now one win away from becoming the first team to win back-to-back titles in this ATP Masters 1000 tournament's history.
After falling to Henri Kontinen and John Peers in the 2017 championship match, the second seeds claimed their maiden Shanghai trophy as a team last year with a straight-sets victory against Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares. Melo will try to claim his fourth Shanghai crown, having also lifted the trophy in 2013 (w/Dodig) and 2015 (w/Klaasen).
Pavic and Soares began their partnership at the Fever-Tree Championships in June and have compiled an 11-7 record on the ATP Tour. The Croatian-Brazilian pairing is yet to drop a set in Shanghai this week.
This will be the first FedEx ATP Head2Head meeting between the two teams. Melo and Soares won four ATP Tour doubles titles together from 2010-12.