John Peers remains on track to finish the year as one half of the world’s number 1 ranked doubles pair after a dream debut at the ATP World Tour Finals overnight.
Playing in front of a sell out O2 Arena in London, Peers and partner Jamie Murray opened up the season-ending tournament with a tough three set win over Italian’s Fabio Fognini and Simone Bolelli.
The Australian and Scotsman combined to hold their nerve in a third set match tiebreak to take the match 7-6 3-6 11-9.
Peers says having 17,000 British fans cheering them on was crucial.
“It’s always handy having the crowd on your side in a stadium like this,” said Peers.
“It makes a little bit of difference, I felt, at the end.”
Currently sitting fourth in the ATP rankings, the pair need to win the exclusive eight team event to reach number one, with yesterday’s win putting them in a strong position to make the semi-final stage.
The top team from their pool of four goes straight into the semis, while the runner-up faces a sudden death playoff.
Waiting for them next is the tournament’s number eight seeds, Rohan Bopanna and Florin Mergea, with the clash to kick things off tomorrow at 12 noon London time.