The season ending Tennis Masters Cup tournament got under way Saturday in Houston, Texas with doubles matches opening the event. The defending champions kept their record at this event perfect.
Bob and Mike Bryan of the United States improved their doubles record to 6-0 at Tennis Masters Cup with a 6-3, 7-6 win over the Argentine duo of Gaston Etlis and Martin Rodriguez. The California twins saved one set point when serving in the second set. The Bryans have won an ATP-best six titles this season and improved their record to 60-16 as a team this season.
In other results, Jonas Bjorkman of Sweden and and Australian Todd Woodbridge teamed up to defeat Mahesh Bhupathi of India and Max Mirnyi of Belarus 6-2, 6-3, while South Africa's Wayne Black and Kevin Ullyett of Zimbabwe toppled the Czech team of Martin Damm and Cyril Suk, 6-2, 6-2.
Singles action at Tennis Masters Cup begins Monday. Craig Gabriel previews the action, saying "it is the yearend championship and one of the most prestigious tournaments in tennis. And for the second year running it is being played in Houston, and as the locals say, everything is bigger and better in Texas. Well, you can not get much bigger or better than the eight leading men players. The Red Group has Roger Federer, Lleyton Hewitt, Carlos Moya and Gaston Gaudio, while the Blue Group has Andy Roddick, Tim Henman, Marat Safin and Guillermo Coria. Between them they hold eleven Grand Slam titles. First day's action will see title holder and world number one Roger Federer take on French Open winner Gaston Gaudio and then Lleyton Hewitt, a dual winner of the Tennis Masters Cup, faces Spain's Carlos Moya.
In Sunday doubles action, Mark Knowles of the Bahamas and Daniel Nestor of Canada take on Belgians Xavier Malisse of Belgium and Olivier Rochus. They are followed on the court by Bhupathi and Mirnyi against Etlis and Rodriguez and the Bryan twins playing Bjorkman and Woodbridge.