A Wimbledon final and a US Open final would be a heck of a season for most doubles teams.
But despite that, it appears Scotland’s Jamie Murray and partner John Peers of Australia are splitting up.
The announcement doesn’t come from either Murray or Peers but from Brazilian doubles specialist Bruno Soares, who has announced that he will play with Murray in 2016.
The news comes from the blog of Diana Gabanyi, the Brazilian who notably was Gustavo Kuerten’s media-relation liaison during his entire career.
Soares told Gabanyi that he felt his results with longtime partner Alexander Peya of Austria weren’t up to their standards this year, even though they’re currently 10th in the race to London. Clearly it’s on good terms; the two are playing together in Vienna this week, and for the rest of the season.
The Brazilian said the first person he approached was countryman Marcelo Melo (with the Olympics coming up in their home country in 2016, it was an obvious and logical choice). But Melo told him he was sticking with current partner Ivan Dodig, with whom he won the French Open this year. (Notably, Melo approached Daniel Nestor a year ago to team up, but Nestor didn’t go for it). The very same day, Soares said, Murray asked him to play.
Melo and Soares played together at Indian Wells this year, reaching the semis before losing to eventual champs Vasek Pospisil and Jack Sock. Along the way, they defeated Murray and Peers. The two reached the quarters at the Olympics in London in 2012 and have played a lot of Davis Cup together; they were a full-time team in 2010 and 2011, as well as in the early 00s when they were just starting out on the Futures circuit.
The gents are so civilized about this, aren’t they? Murray and Peers, currently fourth in the doubles race, will be playing in the ATP Tour Finals, which obviously would be their final event.
As for Peers? Well, perhaps a hint came during the Asian swing, which Murray skipped to spend some quality time at home. Peers teamed up with … Leander Paes, who has been freelancing since he and Nestor called it a day after a few months together this year. They had it tough in Beijing and Shanghai; both weeks, they met Nestor and French partner Édouard Roger-Vasselin early on, and were beaten.
The annual late-season game of doubles musical chairs has finished its first round.