Merseyside tennis player Neal Skupski has edged closer to a first ATP Finals qualification with a strong showing in the Erste Bank Open.

The 30-year-old is currently ranked 26th in the ATP Doubles official rankings and has been partnered with Jamie Murray, brother of Andy, since the start of 2019.

Murray and Skupski narrowly lost out yesterday in Vienna, to third seeds Kubot and Melo 7-6 (7-5) 7-5.

They move up to 7th in qualification with just one tournament left to play.

The pair will now travel to Paris for the final open of the year.

Both look to cement a place in the ATP Finals for the first time.

Daily Mail tennis correspondent Mike Dickson spoke of his admiration for the progression Skupski has made since joining up with Murray within the doubles game.

“I think in regards to his previous partnership with his brother, they both realised they had come to the end of the line and then offer came through from Jamie that really he couldn’t refuse,” he told Merseysportlive.

“It’s a sport really where you have to look after your own interests and I think he was quite keen to give it a go.

With only a few points separating three doubles pairings heading into this week’s penultimate tournament, it’s a chance for Skupski to test himself on the biggest stage and Dickson admits its one in which he should attempt to grab with both hands.

“It’s quite a big incentive because of the money and the prestige that comes with it, its a great opportunity and its one that players really mark themselves by whether they make the finals or not.

“Even within this weird season that were having now its a huge incentive for pairs to do that and they really need the points.

“In terms of predicting, its probably 50/50 these matches tend to be really tight and end up being decided on a few points.”

Murray and Skupski are currently seventh in the race for London, with only eight doubles pairs to qualify.

Their attention must now quickly switch to the Paris Masters next week.

They face Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi and Stefanos Tsitsipas in the 1st Round.