India’s Rohan Bopanna and his Croatian partner Ivan Dodig have been knocked out of the Cincinnati Masters, also known as The Western & Southern Open, men’s doubles in the opening round on Tuesday.
Up against Serbia’s Filip Krajinovic and France’s Fabrice Martin, Bopanna-Dodig lost despite dominating the first set to go down 6-1, 4-6, 7-10. Krajinovic-Martin will play third seed Colombian pair of Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah in the second round.
Bopanna-Dodig broke their opponents twice in the second and the fourth game of the opening set to take a 6-1 lead.
In the second set, they had a breakpoint in the first game itself but Krajinovic-Martin bounced back, breaking the Indo-Croatian pair in the fourth game to lead 3-1.
Bopanna-Dodig broke back in the seventh game and held serve to be tied at 4-4 but Krajinovic-Martin took the second set 6-4 to force a tie-breaker.
Bopanna-Dodig tried to catch up as the momentum swung in favour of their opponents at 4-0. They narrowed the margin to 6-5 but Krajinovic-Martin raced ahead to win the tie-breaker 10-7, and, with it, the match.
Last week, the Indo-Croatian pair was knocked out of the Canadian Open quarter-finals, losing to Joe Salisbury (Great Britain) and Rajeev Ram (USA) 4-6, 6-3, 10-4.
Sania Mirza is the only other Indian in action at the Cincinnati Masters. The former doubles world No. 1 Sania will partner Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur against Veronika Kudermetova of Russia and Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan in the women’s doubles opening round on Wednesday.