TEMPE, Ariz. – Arkansas seniors Rohan Gajjar and Matt Roberts each advanced Saturday to the finals of the Arizona State Thunderbird Invitational in Tempe, Ariz., setting up an all-Razorback final.
The duo also teamed to advance to Sunday’s championship round in doubles, giving the Hogs a chance to sweep the titles at the Thunderbird Invitational.
“(Gajjar and Roberts) just played phenomenal today,” Razorback Coach Robert Cox said, “They played the way two seniors are supposed to play.”
Gajjar, ranked No. 31, advanced the championship round by knocking off Arizona State’s Jonathan Kinsella, 3-6, 6-4, 7-5. The win improved his 2005 fall mark to 5-2.
Roberts also defeated a Sun Devil, taking down 48th-ranked Chris Biro, 6-2, 6-2. The 73rd-ranked Little Rock, Ark. native bettered his record to 8-2.
Sunday’s championship will mark the first time Gajjar and Roberts have faced each other.
In doubles, Gajjar and Roberts, playing together for the first time since the spring of 2004, won their semifinal match against Loyola Marymount’s Nico Terrien and Mike Wojnarowicz, 8-4. The win improved their record to 2-0, and set up Sunday’s final with Stjepan Beg and Brice Magnanou of New Mexico State.
“(Gajjar and Roberts) really bounced back this week, after not having a great regional last week,” Cox said, “We’re out here adjusting to this heat, and they’ve just played awesome. I couldn’t be more proud.”
In Friday’s action, Gajjar knocked off Magnanou, 0-6, 6-2, 6-4, and -Auburn’s Nick Lane, 6-4,1-6, 6-3. Roberts defeated Wojnarowicz, 6-4, 1-6, 6-3, and Arizona State’s Ryan McBride, 6-4, 4-6, 6-4.
The pair beat Biro and Nick Hegarty, 8-3, to claim their first doubles victory this season.
Sunday’s championship rounds begin at 10 a.m. with the doubles final, followed by Roberts and Gajjar in the singles final.
Results from the 2005 ASU Men’s Tennis Thunderbird:Friday, Oct. 28Singles – First Round:Rohan Gajjar (Ark.) def. Brice Magnanou (NMSU) – 0-6, 6-2, 6-4 Nick Lane (Aub.) def. T.J. Bellama (ASU) – 6-1, 6-3 Jonathan Kinsella (ASU) def. Brian Grooms (NAU) – 6-0, 6-3Nico Terrien (LMU) def. Mike Beatty (ASU) – 6-0, ret.Matt Roberts (Ark.) def. Mike Wojnarowicz (LMU) – 6-4, 1-6, 6-3Ryan McBride (ASU) def. Terrence Nugent (Aub.) – 6-3, 6-4Nick Hegarty (ASU) def. Stjepan Beg (NMSU) – 6-4, 6-1Christopher Biro (ASU) def. Trent Hayward (NAU) – 6-3, 6-2Second Round:Rohan Gajjar (Ark.) def. Nick Lane (Aub.) – 6-3, 6-3Jonathan Kinsella (ASU) def. Nico Terrien (LMU) – 6-3, 6-2Matt Roberts (Ark.) def. Ryan McBride (ASU) – 6-4, 4-6, 6-4Christopher Biro (ASU) def. Nick Hegarty (ASU) – 6-1, 6-4Doubles – First Round:Gajjar/Roberts (Ark.) def. Biro/Hegarty (ASU) – 8-3Terrien/Wojnarowicz (LMU) def. Beatty/Bellama (ASU) – 8-6Beg/Magnanou (NMSU) def. Kinsella/McBride (ASU) – 9-7Nugent/Lane (Aub.) def. Grooms/Hayward (NAU) – 8-3 Saturday, Oct. 29Singles – Semi Finals:Rohan Gajjar (Ark.) def. Jonathan Kinsella (ASU) – 3-6, 6-4, 7-5Matt Roberts (Ark.) def. Christopher Biro (ASU) – 6-2, 6-3Doubles – Semi Finals:Gajjar/Roberts (Ark.) def. Terrien/Wojnarowicz (LMU) – 8-4Beg/Magnanou (NMSU) def. Nugent/Lane (Aub.) – 8-3