Indian tennis star Rohan Bopanna and his Australian partner Matthew Ebden advanced to the semi-finals of the ATP Finals men’s doubles event after defeating the pair of Wesley Koolhof and Neal Skupski in straight sets here on Friday.
Bopanna-Ebden pair won 6-4, 7-6(5) over Koolhof (the Netherlands) and Skupski (Great Britain) in a Red Group qualification decider that lasted 84 minutes.
The third-seeded Indo-Australian duo produced a strong performance on serve, winning 88 per cent (35/40) of points behind their first delivery to improve to 2-1 in Red Group play.
With their 40th tour-level win of the season, Bopanna and Ebden joined defending champions Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury in the knockout stages from Red Group.
Earlier this week, Bopanna, 43, became the oldest player to win a match in the tournament history.
Bopanna and Ebden first teamed up at the start of this season and enjoyed an impressive year together, winning tour-level trophies in Doha and Indian Wells.
Bopanna is making his fourth appearance at the year-end event, while Ebden is debuting.
Bopanna and Ebden can still finish the season with year-end ATP Doubles No. 1. They must reach the final to pass already-eliminated Dodig and Krajicek, who are in top spot. Koolhof and Skupski can no longer finish the season at No. 1.
The pairs of Santiago Gonzalez-Edouard Roger Vasselin and Marcel Granollers-Horacio Zeballos — who are in the fray in Green Group — must lift the trophy to move to No. 1.