Lukasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo snapped Nicolas Mahut and Edouard Roger-Vasselin’s six-match win streak on Saturday, beating the Frenchmen 6-2, 6-4 to advance to their third straight championship match at the Rolex Shanghai Masters.
The Polish-Brazilian team won 85 per cent of first-serve points (28/33) and did not face a break point during the 67-minute encounter against the Tokyo titlists. Kubot and Melo are now one win away from becoming the first team to win back-to-back titles in tournament history.
After falling to Henri Kontinen and John Peers in the 2017 championship match, the second seeds claimed their maiden Shanghai trophy as a team last year following a straight-sets victory against Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares. Melo will be attempting to claim his fourth Shanghai crown, having also lifted the trophy in 2013 (w/Dodig) and 2015 (w/Klaasen).
Pavic and Soares began their partnership at the Fever-Tree Championships in June and have compiled an 11-7 record on the ATP Tour. The Croatian-Brazilian pairing is yet to drop a set in Shanghai this week.