ATLANTA, USA – Young Lithuanian tennis star Richard Berankis has impressed in a rare doubles showing, making it through to the semifinals of the July 17 – July 24 Atlanta Tennis Championship, playing alongside Xavier Malisse of Belgium.
Having been out of action with injury for nearly four months, Berankis decided to enter both the doubles and singles draws on his return to action – just the second time this season that he has appeared in a doubles draw at an ATP event.
After being delayed by rain earlier in the week, the pairing finally took to the court on Wednesday, knocking over Nicolas Mahut of France and Gilles Muller of Luxembourg 4-6 6-4 10-5. It was sweet revenge for Berankis who had been knocked out of the singles draw in the first round by Mahut earlier in the week.
In the quarter finals Berankis and Malisse needed just two sets to tidy up India’s Somdev Devvarman and his Filipino partner Treat Conrad Huey, winning through to the semifinals 6-1 7-6 (5).
Their run however, would be stopped in the semis by eventual champions Alex Bogomolov Jr. of USA and partner Mathew Ebden of Australia. Going down 1-6 in the opening set, Berankis and Malisse showed more fight in the second set before eventually falling 6-7 (3) in a tie breaker.
This week Berankis will be back to just competing in singles, playing in the Farmers Classic in Los Angeles, alongside Ernests Gulbis of Latvia.