It took just 45 minutes for Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut to defeat Damir Dzumhur and Filip Krajinovic 6-1, 6-2 to advance into the second round at the BNP Paribas Open.
Herbert/Mahut race away with the first set
The match started with three of the four players holding their opening service games. With the fifth seeds ahead 2-1, they brought up the first breakpoints of the match, two of them with Herbert's low volley forcing Dzumhur to hit a return into the net.
But it was the Bosnian who chased down a drop shot to hit a forehand that Herbert netted as he forced a deciding point. Ultimately, he and Krajinovic lost the point with the 27-year-old Frenchman putting away an overhead on his second attempt to break Dzumhur for 3-1.
Herbert followed it up with a comfortable hold of serve to love to lead 4-1 in quick succession. Continuing their blistering start, the French duo grabbed a further two break points for a double break. Krajinovic crumbled under the pressure by serving a double-fault to gift the double break to the fifth seeds who were left serving for the opening set.
Two set points arrived but the Serbian crushed a forehand winner to stay in the match only momentarily. An unreturnable second serve from the veteran 36-year-old Frenchman finished the job off to clinch the opening set 6-1 in just over 20 minutes of play.
Herbert/Mahut continue dominance to progress
Having won the first set and with momentum firmly on their side, the French duo immediately brought up a break point at 30-40 with a lob winner from Herbert. He then hit a low volley to which the Serbian couldn't react quickly and the fifth seeds broke before consolidating to love for 2-0 as they took full control of the contest.
Still struggling to deal with the French pair, the Bosnian-Serbian were in danger of heading a double break down early on in the second set as they fell three breakpoints behind with Mahut striking a backhand shot down the middle. The unseeded pair fell down a double break with Mahut smashing a volley towards the 26-year-old Serb.
Herbert made sure the pair strengthened their position by holding to 15 to lead a set and 4-0 on Dzumhur/Krajinovic. The 26-year-old stopped the rot of seven games lost in a row to eventually put he and Dzumhur on the scoreboard in the second set at 4-1 with a rare comfortable service game.
Having won their first game of the set, the Bosnian-Serbian duo then played a great game to earn four breakpoints in the sixth game. But the inform French pair snuffed out the breakpoints and held on to lead 5-1. The unseeded pair won just their third game of the match but it was Herbert/Mahut who closed out the match in 45 minutes.