India's Leander Paes and his German partner Alexander Zverev went down to the Spanish duo of Feliciano Lopez and Marc Lopez in the first round of men's doubles at the Cincinnati Open. The Indo-German pair fought hard before losing 6-2, 6(2)-7, 6-10 to their Spanish rivals in a closely-fought contest, which lasted an hour and 21 minutes.
The Spaniards will next take on fourth seeded American twins Bob and Mike Bryan in the second round.
Following the defeat, Zverev reflected on his debut partnership with Paes. The 20-year-old said that although they have lost the match today, it was fun playing with him.
"I know him quite well. He's a good guy. Unfortunately we lost today, but it was fun playing with him," the ATP website quoted Zverev, as saying.
Zverev also admitted that the doubles' event can improve his singles game.
"The serve and return helps. You get used to the conditions a little bit more, the match conditions. That's very good. Obviously the volleys improve," the right-hander said.
Zverev has already clinched five titles this year, while Paes is a veteran of 54 doubles titles.
Meanwhile, Rohan Bopanna and Ivan Dodig of Croatia have got a first round bye.