France's Nicolas Mahut claimed he didn't know he and partner Pierre-Hugues Herbert would qualify for the semifinals at the Nitto ATP Finals with a straight-set win on Wednesday. Mahut and Herbert have yet to drop a set at The O2 Arena this year as they improved to 2-0 in Group Max Mirnyi after a tight straight-set win over 2019 French Open champions Kevin Krawietz and Andreas Mies 7-5 7-6 (3).
"We didn’t know before the match [that we needed to win in straight sets to qualify tonight]. We just wanted to come on court and win this match,” Mahut said, per the ATP website. “I knew we had to play [at a] really high level and I think it is what we did today.
We had a great start and they came back really strong… We are really happy with the win." The Germans paid the price for blowing an early second set and not realizing any of their two break points in the third game for a double break lead as the Frenchmen worked their way back into the set and eventually stole it.
"They played really well. A high-level match. They put a lot of returns in and played really well. I am happy that we stayed together, even in the tough moments,” Herbert said. “We were a break down in the second. I got broken twice in a row, I stayed in it and we managed to win this second set. That is what I am most proud of”.