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Ram/Salisbury Continue Title Defence In Turin, Reach Final
Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury moved to within one win of successfully defending their Nitto ATP Finals crown on Saturday when they defeated Santiago Gonzalez and Edouard Roger-Vasselin, ending the fourth seeds Year-End ATP Doubles No. 1 presented by Pepperstone hopes.
As they have done throughout their time together, the American-British pair came up with big shots in big moments, finding first serves and penetrating returns to triumph 7-6(5), 3-6, 10-7 after one hour and 50 minutes.
Ram and Salisbury have now won their past nine matches in Turin, having lifted the trophy at the year-end event 12 months ago. They will aim to make it 10 and successive crowns when they play Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos in the final.
"It is amazing," Salisbury said. "I can't quite believe it. We have had some really tough matches this week. We have not always played our best but we managed to come through and it feels that there is something speical playing here. It is amazing to play in another final here tomorrow."
Earlier this season, the American-British team won their third consecutive US Open crown, while they won tour-level events in Lyon and Vienna.
"It took us sticking together and believing that got us through in the end," Ram said. "The tennis is so marginal. Those guys have had a great year and great recent form."
Gonzalez and Roger-Vasselin were making their first appearance at the year-end event as a team, with Gonzalez the third Mexican to qualify for the semi-finals in tournament history. The Mexican-French pair lifted five tour-level trophies this year, including ATP Masters 1000 crowns in Miami and Paris.
Gonzalez and Roger-Vasselin can no longer finish the year at No. 1. If Granollers and Zeballos win the title they will end the season in top spot. If not, Ivan Dodig and Austin Krajicek will receive Year-End ATP Doubles No. 1 presented by Pepperstone honours.
Did You Know
Ram and Salisbury have now won three Match Tie-breaks at this year's Nitto ATP Finals.
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