South Africa’s run at the Australian Open has come to an end as doubles ace Raven Klaasen exited in the first round in Melbourne on Thursday.
Teamed up with New Zealander Michael Venus, Klaasen went down in straight sets 7-6 (14) 7-6 (4).
They were seeded eighth (ATP doubles ranking 15th) for the year’s first Grand Slam tournament and went down to the unseeded combination of American Scott Lipsky and Spaniard David Marrero.
Lipsky is currently ranked 69th on the doubles list and Marrero 77th.
Lipsky and Marrero will now play the Spanish duo of Pablo Carreno Busta and Guillermo Garcia-Lopez in the next round.
The match lasted 1hr 43min and saw Klaasen and Venus winning the aces battle to the tune of 9-3. However, they negated that with eight double faults to only three by Lipsky and Marrero.
Last year Klaasen made the last 32 at the Australian Open, two years ago reached the quarter-finals and in 2014 reached the final. This is the first time he’s failed to reach the second round.
Picture of Klaasen and Venus courtesy of Pat Scala/Getty Images
Credit: SASCOC Mark Etheridge