Mirnyi and Huey at center of close doubles race to London

Max Mirnyi and Treat Huey will play two consecutive matches against the teams directly behind them in the race to the World Tour Finals. Such is the luck of the draws at the ongoing Swiss Indoors Basel and the upcoming BNP Paribas Masters in Paris.

Mirnyi and Huey, currently No. 7 in the race to London, fell in the Basel quarters to Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau 6-7(9), 6-4, 10-4 . Rojer and Tecau, the defending champions of the World Tour Finals, are one spot out at No. 9 in the race. They could have moved into qualifying position by winning Basel, but the Dutch-Romanian pairing succumbed to Robert Lindstedt and Michael Venus 1-6, 6-3, 10-8 in the semis.

As such, Mirnyi and Huey actually climbed from No. 8 to No. 7 despite their quarterfinal exit. That was a result of Henri Kontinen and John Peers losing in the Basel first round 6-4, 7-6(5) to Nicolas Mahut and Edouard Roger-Vasselin. Kontinen and Peers have 3,140 points–only 25 points behind Mirnyi and Huey; 270 points ahead of Rojer and Tecau.

A crucial first-rounder in Paris will soon feature the seventh and eighth pairings in the 2016 race: Mirnyi and Huey vs. Kontinen and Peers. The winner will just about lock up a spot in London, because that tandem would have to be overtaken by both Rojer and Tecau and another team. Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah, the 10th-place team, must advance to at least the Paris title match. Rojer and Tecau have to reach at least the semifinals in order to have a chance.

Rojer and Tecau own an opening-round bye, awaiting the winner of Jack Sock and Nicholas Monroe vs. Marcin Matkowski and Dominic Inglot.

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