© Mike Lawrence/ATP Tour
Top seeds Ram/Salisbury could play Kokkinakis/Kyrgios in second round
Wesley Koolhof and Neal Skupski will aim to capture a Tour-leading sixth title of the season and strengthen their lead in the Pepperstone ATP Doubles Teams Rankings when they compete at the Western & Southern Open next week.
However, their task won’t be easy in Cincinnati, with the third seeds facing a series of potential testing assignments in a stacked top half. The Dutch-British tandem could face singles star Carlos Alcaraz and Pablo Carreno Busta in their opening match, if the Spaniards can overcome Santiago Gonzalez and Edouard Roger-Vasselin. Carreno Busta won the doubles title with Alex de Minaur in 2020.
Koolhof and Skupski are on a collision course to meet Roland Garros finalists Ivan Dodig and Austin Krajicek in the quarter-finals, while they could face Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury in the semi-finals.
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The top seeds, who have six tour-level trophies together, including two ATP Masters 1000 titles, could play Australian Open champs Thanasi Kokkinakis and Nick Kyrgios in a popcorn second-round clash. Kokkinakis and Kyrgios will open against Simone Bolelli and Fabo Fognini.
The second seeds are seeded to meet Roland Garros victors Marcelo Arevalo and Jean-Julien Rojer in the semi-finals, with the fourth seeds potentially playing Croatians Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic in the quarter-finals.