India suffered the worst possible start at the China Open, with both Leander Paes and Rohan Bopanna exiting from the men's doubles competition with their respective partners in the ongoing series.
Paes has been one of the best doubles players India has ever produced, winning a number of titles with different partners. But the Indian star, paired alongside Germany's Andre Begemann, was knocked out by Jack Sock and Bernard Tomic in a close encounter, the score reading 6-3, 5-7, 7-10, which lasted for 87 minutes.
The Indo-German pair were the wildcard entrants and played some brilliant tennis to clinch the first set. Their chemistry was superb, but the second set saw the opponents playing some good tennis, with a strong determination to win.
With the match tied at 1-1, the first round encounter went into a tie breaker, and the pairing of Sock and Tomic continued where they let off in the second set. Despite a valiant effort from the Indo-German pair, Paes and Begemann lost the tie breaker, 7-10.
Coming to the other match, which was hotly-contested, Bopanna, who was paired with Daniel Nestor, started brightly against Rafael Nadal and Pablo Carreno Busta. Bopanna and Nestro were shown the exit by the Spanish duo, who emerged victorious with the score reading 6-7, 4-6.
This match had it all, including some strong play at the baseline and quality net play along with huge serves. The Indo-Canadain pair looked good, but could not covert some important points in crucial juncture.
With the first set ending 6-7 in favour of the Spaniards, Bopanna and Nestor were in serious need to lift their game to take the game to the tie-breaker, which could not happen. They lost the set, 4-6, and with it the match as well.
Now, India will hope for Sania Mirza and Barbora Strycova to deliver in the women's doubles competition.