John-Patrick Smith and doubles partner Paul Hanley pushed the third-seeded team at Wimbledon to the very brink in a five setter but could not close the deal in the second round.
Smith's first career experience on the famous grass courts ended Saturday with a 4-6, 6-1, 6-7 (6), 7-5, 10-8 loss to Alexander Peya and Bruno Soares.
In a rain-delayed start to the match Friday, the two teams split sets before play was suspended because of darkness to start the fifth set. With only one set to play on Saturday, the teams made sure it was a long one.
Both teams held serve with relative ease through the fifth set. Smith and Hanley had two break points opportunities in the set but were unable to capitalize. Peya and Soares also had two break point chances and got one of them, breaking at 9-8 to end the extended fifth set to avoid the upset.
Soares entered the fortnight ranked sixth in the ATP World Rankings, and Peya was ranked eighth. Smith is currently ranked 80th in the world, but he should move into the top 75 when the new rankings arrive.
Wimbledon was the first tournament for Smith and Hanley as a doubles pairing. Smith has played doubles with seven different partners so far this season.