Tennis Brothers 101

Tennis Pilot

Tuesday, December 3, 2019 11:23 AM UTC

Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2019 11:23 AM UTC

Does blood run thicker than water on the ATP Tour?
<div><h2>The Murrays – Andy and Jamie</h2><p>The Murray brothers are a great example of how two players can turn out entirely different even with very similar initial coaching. Jamie is a year older and exclusively plays doubles, while Andy is, of course, best known for his exploits in singles, where he is a 3 time grand slam champion and a 2 time Olympic gold medallist. In 2016 both players were at the top of their game, literally – Andy was world number 1 in singles and Jamie was number 1 in doubles.</p><p>As a doubles pair they have a 35-25 record spanning an impressive 13 years, but they haven’t played as much recently with a 7-3 record since 2013. Most notably, the pair won all 3 of their doubles matches when Great Britain won the Davis Cup back in 2015, the first time GB had won the event for 79 years. The team format and family dynamic really brought the best out of both, especially Andy, who won the final singles rubber against Goffin in style, employing his signature backhand lob to win the final point before dropping to the ground in joy and disbelief.</p><p> </p><h2>The Zverevs - Alex and Mischa</h2><p>The Zverev brothers have a 10 year age gap and employ very different playing styles. Undeniably, Zverev the younger is the more talented singles player having been as high as world number 3, but both have made the top 30 in their career and had success to a greater or lesser extent on the singles circuit.</p><p>As a doubles pair they have a 32-30 record at main level. Most notably, en route to winning the 2019 Acapulco title, Zverev/Zverev defeated Bryan/Bryan, the most successful doubles team in history. The Zverev brothers have also won the title in Montpellier and have wins as the underdog against Rojer/Tecau, Monro/Sock, Klaasen/Ram, Lindstedt/Venus and Marac/Pavic, all since 2017, so the due can be formidable on form. Arguably, Zverev the elder is the better doubles player. He is a serve volleyer and so more comfortable coming forward aggressively, though he is clearly weaker on return.</p><p><a href=";a=9feaaf7a-d7a2-4185-974a-81ad171951df&amp;f=3"><img alt src="" style="width:100%;height:12px" /></a></p><h2>The Bryans – Bob and Mike</h2><p>The Bryan brothers are arguably the best doubles pair of all time. Ironically, the identical twins do not share handedness – Mike is right-handed, Bob left-handed – and they employ the classic righty-lefty combo to great effect on court. They have won the most matches, tournaments and Grand Slams of any male pairing in history, and hold the record for most time spent as a pair at number 1 at 438 weeks. They have finished the year as world number 1 a record 10 times and won the gold medal in the 2012 Olympics.</p><p>One of the most notable features of their game is the celebration. The brothers have a signature chest bump which makes their exhilarating style even more entertaining. Often credited with saving the game of doubles, the pair are now 41 years old and recently announced they will retire at the 2020 US Open. A fitting end to the career of two American superstars.</p><p> </p><h2>The Ymers – Mikael and Elias</h2><p>The Ymers have been an exciting pair of young talents to watch rise through the rankings, though they’ve each had their struggles. Elias is the elder child but I have long felt Mikael had more potential. Sure enough, Mikael has really come into his own of late reaching a career high of 73, while Elias has slipped from a career high of 105 to 177. Still, they clearly have potential and I would expect a successful singles career for both.</p><p>The pair have had mixed results in the doubles and haven’t played much with an 8-8 record. However, they impressed mightily back in 2016 when they won their home title in Stockholm despite having never player together as a pair. They were underdogs in every match that week with an especially notable victory priced over 5 against Matko/Rojer in their opening round, a phenomenal scalp. A dream week for two talented young brothers if ever there was one.</p></div>
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