2017 Season Review: Kontinen/Peers continue success to capture major titles

2017 saw Henri Kontinen and John Peers win their maiden Grand Slam title as well as defending their World Tour Finals title.

2017 Season Review: Kontinen/Peers continue success to capture major titles
Henri Kontinen and John Peers finished second in the rankings after Australian Open and World Tour Finals titles (Photo: John Patrick Fletcher/Getty Images)

Henri Kontinen and John Peers had an eventful season, to say the least. The pair remained consistent throughout the season and managed to win their maiden Grand Slam title at the Australian Open, as well as retain the Nitto ATP World Tour Finals title. However, during parts of the season, they would fail to back up a win by falling in the very next round. Overall, this season was successful. 

Win-Loss Record

Kontinen and Peers finished the season with a 43-17 record and amassed the same number of wins but lost two fewer matches than in 2016. The Finn-Australian ended the year as the number two seeds and remained one of the toughest teams to defeat. 

High Points

Though the two were consistent enough throughout the season with their results, their season really took off at Wimbledon, where they would go on to make the semifinals following three victories only to lose to the world number one team Lukasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo in a tight fifth set 9-7. They would go on to avenge that loss to Kubot and Melo by winning in straight sets in Washington, coming through to tight matches the previous rounds. 

Henri Kontinen and Jhn Peers capture their one and only Masters title of the year (Photo: Ying Ding/Getty Images)
Henri Kontinen and Jhn Peers capture their one and only Masters title of the year (Photo: Ying Ding/Getty Images)

They would exit early in their next two tournaments but would find their form once again at the US Open, falling to Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau in a close encounter in the semifinal. The pair would do the double in Asia at the China Open and Shanghai Masters. Kontinen and Peers, despite losing their opening match, would go on to defend their crown at the World Tour Finals, defeating the inform team of Kubot and Melo rather comfortably in straights to take their record to 10-1 in London. 

Low Points

Although the pair had some great results, they also endured some poor losses and form throughout a successful season. In the first two Masters tournaments of the year, they would fall pretty early, in the quarterfinals at Indian Wells and the second round at the Miami Open the following week. Moving over to clay and the poor form continued with a quarterfinal losses at the Monte-Carlo Masters, Barcelona Open and Madrid Open

They would fall early at the French Open too, losing in the opening round to Spaniards David Marrero and Tommy Robredo in straight sets. Having made the SF or better in three of the four Grand Slams, the pair have yet to master the clay courts of France with the Finn failing to go beyond the second round with two different partners while Peers managing to go only one round better which he achieved in 2014 and '15 with his former partner Jamie Murray

Best Results

Kontinen and Peers best results would come at the start and at the end of a long season. Coming into the Australian Open with no wins, the pair would go on to capture the title, their first Grand Slam title. In Round one and two, the pair would get back to playing their best tennis with comfortable wins over Santiago Gonzalez and David Marrero then Marcos Baghdatis and Gilles Muller. They would drop their one and only set to Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah before defeating two Australian pairs Samuel Groth and Chris Guccione in the quarterfinals and Marc Polmans and Andrew Whittington in the semifinal. 

Henri Kontinen and John Peers claim their maiden Grand Slam title at the Australian Open (Photo: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)
Henri Kontinen and John Peers claim their maiden Grand Slam title at the Australian Open (Photo: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

They would go on to defeat the Bryans in the final to capture their maiden Grand Slam title. Fast forward 11 months, the pair would go on to defend their Nitto ATP World Tour Finals title. They would lose to Ryan Harrison and Michael Venus in the opening match but managed to defeat Rojer and Tecau, and alternates Raven Klaasen and Rajeev Ram to qualify for the semifinals. The number two pair would then defeat Murray and Bruno Soares in straights before demolishing the best team of the year Kubot and Melo as the underdogs to make it a double in London. 

Worst Results

The World number two would struggle to defend their Brisbane title, losing in the opener to Kei Nishikori and Dominic Thiem. At the Queens Club, they failed to go beyond the quarterfinals losing to Ivan Dodig and Rohan Bopanna. They gained form in the next two tournaments but came crashing out of the next two Masters events to Oliver Marach and Mate Pavic in two sets then Harrison and Venus which came as a surprise as the American-New Zealander had no real consistency throughout the year. 

They picked themselves up the next three tournaments but again, the next two would see them win just the one match. The pair would be shocked in Switzerland losing to scrap pairing Marcus Daniell and Dom Inglot in straight sets. They also failed to rebound and defend their Paris Masters title. With a win over Nicholas Monroe and Jack Sock, they would lose comprehensively to Marcel Granollers and Ivan Dodig the next match. 

Grade B+

The grade may be a little harsh but considering the 2016 season they had and although this year the win-loss ratio was similar, they didn't endure the same amount of success despite the five titles but they seem the real deal after backing up their 2016 season with another solid year this. 

Henri Kontinen and John Peers make it a double in London (Photo: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Henri Kontinen and John Peers make it a double in London (Photo: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

They did though manage to win a Grand Slam and defend their ATP Finals title and remained fairly consistent throughout most of the season with the occasional low points scattered. Having won one Masters title in each of their campaigns together, they should be looking to improve in that category.