© Peter Staples/ATP Tour
Top seeds and defending champions Herbert/Mahut in action on Friday
Jamie Murray and Neal Skupski kicked off their Australian Open campaign in style on Friday. The No. 14 seeds navigated a tricky first-round test against Hubert Hurkacz/Vasek Pospisil to prevail 6-4, 6-4. Murray looks for a second crown at this event after prevailing in 2016 (w/Soares).
Aussie wild cards Max Purcell/Luke Saville scored a 7-6(2), 4-6, 6-4 upset over eighth seeds Jean-Julien Rojer/Horia Tecau to reach the third round. Purcell/Saville have won seven ATP Challenger Tour doubles titles together in the past 12 months.
Aussie Assault: Dominant Duo Purcell, Saville Take Aim At 2020
Marcelo Arevalo/Jonny O’Mara saved two match points to score a second-round victory over No. 12 seeds Jurgen Melzer/Edouard Roger-Vasselin 5-7, 7-5, 7-6(11). Arevalo/O’Mara fought back from 3-5 in the second set, then saved match points at 8/9 and 10/11 before advancing in two hours and 32 minutes.
Other seeded teams lived up to their top billing to in second-round action. Fourth seeds Ivan Dodig/Filip Polasek eased past Chris Guccione/Matt Reid 6-3, 6-4, while No. 10 seeds Mate Pavic/Bruno Soares defeated Divij Sharan/Artem Sitak 7-6(2), 6-3. Pavic captured his maiden Grand Slam crown two years ago in Melbourne (w/Marach).
Top seeds Pierre-Hugues Herbert/Nicolas Mahut begin their title defence against Simone Bolelli/Benoit Paire. Second seeds Lukasz Kubot/Marcelo Melo also start their Melbourne campaign with a first-round clash against Guillermo Duran/Diego Schwartzman.