American Reilly Opelka and Italian Jannik Sinner made the most of their team debut this week at the Truist Atlanta Open, defeating American Steve Johnson and Australian Jordan Thompson 6-4, 6-7(6), 10-3 to lift the trophy.
“He gets more [credit] because he was serving very, very good and today obviously he was returning well,” Sinner said. “At the end of the day, we had a lot of fun the whole week. Thanks to him for playing with me.”
Both men were appearing in their first tour-level doubles final, and they completed their impressive run at the ATP 250 by triumphing in the championship match after one hour and 23 minutes.
“It was fun,” Opelka said. “You get a guy [with] returns as good as Jannik’s, you can beat anyone. It was unbelievable. Seriously, it was impressive to watch and it was fun to be around a guy like him. He’s 19, but you wouldn’t know it. He’s so far ahead of his age and you can tell his mind works differently than a lot of the other guys’.”
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Opelka and Sinner did not lose a set en route to the final, including an upset of second seeds Jonathan Erlich of Israel and Santiago Gonzalez of Mexico in the first round. They needed a Match Tie-break in the championship match to emerge victorious, and they came up with clutch returns — winning four of their six return points — to finish the job.
Johnson and Thompson were also playing together for the first time this week, and they won a Match Tie-break in the semi-finals to advance this far. They each have won one ATP Tour doubles title (Johnson with Querrey, Thompson with Kokkinakis).