ATP Finals: Pierre-Hugues Herbert, Nicolas Mahut clinch final semifinal spot



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ATP Finals: Pierre-Hugues Herbert, Nicolas Mahut clinch final semifinal spot

France's Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut have managed to seal the final semifinal spot at the ATP Finals. On Friday's evening sessions, Herbert and Mahut beat Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares 6-3 7-6 (5) to improve to 2-1 and finish second in their group.

Murray and Soares led 3-2 after the opening five games but then Herbert and Mahut claimed back-to-back breaks and won four games in a row to win the opener. No break points were seen then until the 11th game of the second set, when Murray and Soares blew four consecutive set points.

After saving four consecutive set points in the 11th game, Herbert and Mahut took an early 4-1 lead in the tie-break. Mahut and Herbert realized their third match point to book a straight-set win and make their third semifinal at the ATP Finals.

Herbert and Mahut aiming a second ATP Finals title

Herbert and Mahut ended runners-up at the ATP Finals in 2018 but returned to the event a year later and made it all the way. Herbert and Mahut will be battling against Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos for a place in the final at the ATP Finals.

Meanwhile, Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury defeated Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah 7-5 2-6 11-9 to finish the group with a perfect 3-0 record. No break points were seen until the 12th game -- when Ram and Salisbury converted their first break point -- which at the same time was their first set point -- to win a tight opener.

After losing a tight first set, Cabal and Farah responded well as they broke Ram and Salisbury twice to force a decider. Cabal and Farah led 6-4 in the match after the opening 10 points but then Ram and Salisbury won five consecutive points to take an 8-6 lead.

Cabal and Farah won two consecutive points to save two match points and level the match tie-break at 9-9 but Ram and Salisbury then won two consecutive points to earn a tight three-set win. Ram and Salisbury are set to meet Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic in the semifinal. It will be a rematch of this year's Wimbledon final, in which Mektic and Pavic beat Ram and Salisbury.