Competing in just their eighth event as a pairing, Mate Pavic and Bruno Soares captured their first team title at the Rolex Shanghai Masters on Sunday.
The Croatian-Brazilian team snapped defending champions Lukasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo’s eight-match win streak at the ATP Masters 1000 event, breaking serve on three occasions to lift the trophy after 69 minutes. Pavic and Soares improve to 12-7 as a team since joining forces at the Fever-Tree Championships in June.
Pavic owns a 15-18 record in tour-level doubles finals after picking up his second ATP Tour crown of the year. The 26-year-old, who also triumphed in Geneva (w/Marach) in May, improves to 1-1 in Masters 1000 finals.
Soares adds a third trophy to his collection this year, having also picked up ATP 250 crowns in Sydney (w/J. Murray) and Stuttgart (w/Peers). This is the Brazilian’s 32nd tour-level doubles title, with four of those title runs coming at Masters 1000 events.
The eighth seeds secured the only break of the first set in the third game, breaking Kubot’s serve to 15. Pavic fired multiple returns to the laces of the server and Soares anticipated well at the net throughout the game.
The second set followed a similar path, with Pavic and Soares breaking Kubot’s serve for a 2-1 lead. Pavic and Soares targeted the Pole at the net and lobbed with precision to earn the break. After doubling their advantage with a third break of the Kubot serve at 4-2, Soares secured the win with a powerful serve down the T.
Kubot and Melo were aiming to become the first team to win back-to-back titles at this tournament. The second seeds were competing in their 200th tour-level encounter as a pairing (140-60). On Friday, Kubot and Melo joined Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah as the second team to qualify for the Nitto ATP Finals at The O2 in London.
Pavic and Soares earn 1000 ATP Doubles Ranking points and share $408,840 in prize money. Kubot and Melo receive 600 points and split $199,520.