ATP Indian Wells: Novak Djokovic/Viktor Troicki upset the world number one pair Pierre-Hugues Herbert/Nicolas Mahut in match tiebreaker

ATP Indian Wells: Novak Djokovic/Viktor Troicki upset the world number one pair Pierre-Hugues Herbert/Nicolas Mahut in match tiebreaker

Novak Djokovic and Viktor Troicki defeated the world number one and defending champions Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut in three sets to book their spot in the quarterfinals.

vavel
VAVEL

Serbians Novak Djokovic and Viktor Troicki shocked the defending champions Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut 5-7, 6-1, 11-9 to progress to the quarterfinals of the BNP Paribas Open.

Herbert/Mahut grab the first set

The world number one pair started the match immediately by bringing up two break points at 30-40 with a Herbert backhand winner. The Serbians managed to collide as they both attempted to go for the overhead as the French pair broke which was followed by a hold of serve to go 0-2 up. The next four games were held and with the score at 2-4, the Serbian pair were put under pressure as Troicki double faulted at 40-30 to gift a break/deciding point. Troicki then made amends by winning the next point and holding for 3-4. A hold of serve from Mahut left Djokovic and Troicki serving to stay in the set down 3-5.

Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut in action during their three set loss to Novak Djokovic and Viktor Troicki (Photo: Harry How/Getty Images)
Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut in action during their three set loss to Novak Djokovic and Viktor Troicki (Photo: Harry How/Getty Images)

Which they did before pressurising the French duo. Down 15-30, Mahut struck a volley which hit the net to gift break points to the Serbians. They saved one point following a missed overhead but were broken in the next game with Djokovic and Troicki levelling the set at 5-5. However, they couldn't consolidate and fell behind love-40. Troicki, the in-form man won the next two points to close the gap to 30-40, but Herbert hunted down Troicki, going blow for blow before finishing off with an overhead winner to break immediately back and go ahead at 5-6. They wrapped up the set 5-7 on their second set point with an unreturnable serve. 

Djokovic/Troicki fight back in tremendous fashion, sets up match tiebreaker

Both teams started the second set by holding their own serves. The third game, however, the French pair grabbed a break point when Troicki served up a double fault. Serve and volleying got he and Djokovic out of trouble but still down a break point, they claimed the deciding point and got out of a tricky game for 2-1. This seemed to have given the pair confidence as they went and grabbed four break points of their own with a stunning return to the feet of Herbert.

Novak Djokovic and Viktor Troicki keepo their eyes peeled on a ball over the net (Photo: Harry How/Getty Images)
Novak Djokovic and Viktor Troicki keep their eyes peeled on a ball over the net (Photo: Harry How/Getty Images)

Back to back unforced errors allowed the French to get within touching distance but a return winner down the line did the job for Troicki as he and Djokovic broke for 3-1. Djokovic held serve to love for 4-1 and with the momentum on their side, they went and earned four break points in the next game. Three good serves saw Herbert take the game to deuce but still down a break, they were broken and Djokovic/Troicki were left to serve for the set and to send the match into a match tiebreaker. The pair grabbed set point and in no time, won the set, 6-1. 

Djokovic/Troicki shock Herbert/Mahut to advance

The French pair began the match tiebreaker in tremendous fashion, winning the first four points to take a 0-4 lead. However, just like they have done all match, Djokovic and Troicki never gave up and just soon later the deficit was cut and they were level at 4-4. The next five games were won by the server and with the scores at 6-7, Herbert smashed a forehand winner down the line to open up the game.

Pierre-Hugues and Nicolas Mahut congratulate Novak Djokovic and Viktor Troicki on their victroy (Photo: Harry How/Getty Images)
Pierre-Hugues and Nicolas Mahut congratulate Novak Djokovic and Viktor Troicki on their victory (Photo: Harry How/Getty Images)

Once again, though, the pair of Djokovic and Troicki fought back although was with the help of a Herbert double fault to draw them level at 8-8. The French pair won the very next point to set up a match point at 8-9. An unforced error followed by a volley winner saw the match turned once again in the favour of the Serbians who this time, went up a match point at 10-9. Mahut sent a return long on the next point and the match was won by the unseeded duo, who advanced to the quarterfinals. 

VAVEL Logo