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Henri and John Capture First Masters 1000 Crown (6.11.2016 by ATP Staff)

Pairing heads into London on a roll

Henri Kontinen and John Peers continued their late-season surge on Sunday, winning their first ATP World Tour Masters 1000 team title at the BNP Paribas Masters in Paris.

The unseeded Kontinen/Peers knocked off top-seeded Frenchmen Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut 6-4, 3-6, 10-6 in front of a partisan French crowd. The Finnish/Australian duo struck 11 aces and outplayed Herbert/Mahut in the Match Tie-break, leading 9-4 before Peers clinched the title with a forehand volley.

“It was amazing to actually get the first Masters [1000] title for both of us. I know we've put in a lot of hard work together and it's something to cap off a really good year, just before we head into London,” Peers said.

Kontinen/Peers had reached the final of the Shanghai Rolex Masters last month but fell in straight sets to Americans Jack Sock and John Isner. With the Paris title, they'll climb one spot to No. 5 in the Emirates ATP Doubles Race To London. They'll also enter the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals later this month as one of the hottest doubles teams on tour, having dropped only one set en route to their maiden Masters 1000 crown.

“We've just been really building all year, and I believed it was just a matter of time until we really got in sync and started to actually back it up match after match,” Peers said. “We've been able to get some really good matches here and there throughout the year but it's actually been a challenge for us to back it up every day. I think we're starting to learn how to do that as a team and also as individuals so it's been really good to be able to do that.”

Kontinen/Peers will make their team debut at the season finale, to be held 13-20 November at The O2 in London.

“It's a point here and there, and today we got a couple of lucky ones in the Match Tie-break and that obviously helped us in the end,” Kontinen said.

 “They were serving hard. They had a good percentage. They were up at the net immediately,” Mahut said.



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