New Zealander Michael Venus has made a phenomenal start to this year’s Australian Open doubles competition. He and Aussie partner John Peers made quick work of dealing with top Australian singles player Alex De Minaur and mate Matt Reid at an impressive score of 6-3, 6-2 in all of 64 minutes on the court.
Venus and Peers delivered a superb show of serves, winning 81 percent on their very first serve and hitting 22 winners to 14. Their break point-free performance now sees them go up against Korean wild-card entries Ji Sung Nam and Min Kyu in the third round of the doubles AO tour.
Fellow New Zealander Artem Sitak and English partner Jonny O’Mara are in the meantime preparing to play 6th seeds and defending doubles champions Joe Salisbury and Rajeev Ram in their own opening rounds. Playing against the defending champions is bound to mark a harrowing opening round for the Kiwi, who last year got knocked out early in the second round of the tournament.
Another Kiwi at the top of the doubles rankings, Marcus Daniell, and partner Philip Oswald get to go up against singles aces and Frenchmen Giles Simon and Adrian Mannarino – a game Daniell said the pair aren’t taking in their stride. Mannarino, especially, said the Kiwi, is a tricky component to play against and especially on a doubles court.
The three doubles Kiwis have not been able to play with their usual partners in the build-up to this year’s tournament, and head to instead settle for getting in playing time by teaming up with one another at the Great Ocean Road Open.
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