Mate Pavic and Bruno Soares upset No. 1 seeds Robert Farah and Juan Sebastian Cabal in the semifinals of the men’s doubles at Roland Garros on Thursday, 7-6 (4), 7-5, to get within one victory of their second Grand Slam title in a row, having conquered the US Open four weeks ago.
After closing out the 54-minute first set in a tie-break, Pavic and Soares found themselves down a break at 4-2 in the second set—but they broke back, eventually broke again for 6-5 and served it out.
The Croatian-Brazilian pairing is now on a 10-match winning streak at Grand Slams, having gone 5-0 to win their first Grand Slam title as a team in New York (which reduced its usual draw from 64 to 32 teams for 2020 only), and 5-0 to reach the final in Paris.
“I think for us it’s basically about keeping the energy up and playing with conviction,” Soares told RolandGarros.com on Thursday. “We have to bring full-on energy, it’s the final. Whoever is in the final is doing something right over the tournament, so it’s going to be a tough match, no matter what.”
In addition to their 2020 US Open title together, both Pavic and Soares have won majors with other players—Pavic won the 2018 Australian Open with Oliver Marach, while Soares won two majors with Jamie Murray, at the Australian Open and US Open in 2016. Neither has won Roland Garros.
They’ll also be trying to become the first men’s doubles team to capture Roland Garros and the US Open in the same year since Lukas Dlouhy and Leander Paes achieved the feat back in 2009.
Nicolas Gouhier / FFT
Awaiting the No. 7-seeded Pavic and Soares in the final are No. 8-seeded defending champions Kevin Krawietz and Andreas Mies, who broke serve twice in the first set and one more time in the very last game of the match to sneak past No. 9 seeds Wesley Koolhof and Nikola Mektic, 6-3, 7-5.
Krawietz and Mies are now 11-0 together at Roland Garros; they went 6-0 to win the title last year, becoming the first all-German team to win a Grand Slam men’s doubles title. The two are trying to become the first back-to-back men’s doubles champions at Roland Garros since Max Mirnyi and Daniel Nestor captured two straight championships in 2011 and 2012.
“Honestly, if you would have told me six months ago that we would be back in the final, I wouldn’t believe you,” Mies told RolandGarros.com. “We know how difficult it was last year to win the title, and now to get the chance again to win another title, in our second attempt here, is unbelievable.”
Pavic and Soares won the only previous head-to-head meeting between the two teams, a tight 7-6 (2), 4-6 [10-7] victory in the opening round of Cincinnati last summer.
“It’s definitely the biggest challenge we could possibly get in the final, because I think they are the hottest team right now on the tour,” Mies told ATPTour.com. “They won the US Open, they are in the final here, I don’t think there is a better team right now. They have a good chemistry, they play really well, and they don’t have many weaknesses in their game.”