Croatia’s Ivan Dodig and his Slovakian doubles partner Filip Polasek on Sunday won the men’s doubles title in the Australian Open, defeating the defending champions Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury in the final. It’s the pair’s first Grand Slam doubles title together and second for Dodig, who claimed his first in the 2015 French Open with Marcelo Melo.
Croatian Dodig and Slovakian Polasek beat Ram and Salisbury 6-3 6-4 winners at Rod Laver Arena, not facing a break point on and constantly applying pressure on their higher-seeded opponents.
It had to be particularly special for Polasek, who came out of retirement in 2018 after a back issue led to leg problems and forced him out of the game. Two days ago, his partner gave birth to their second child, a daughter.
Polasek served out the contest with ease. He was the lone player of the quartet on court not to have lifted a Grand Slam trophy in men’s doubles.
“Amazing memories. This is our first Grand Slam as a team and we’re having a lot of fun. I hope it continues.” said Dodig.
Ram and Salisbury were foiled in their bid to become the first repeat men’s doubles winners since Bob and Mike Bryan tallied three in a row from 2009-11.
“Since we started to play one and a half years ago, we are really enjoying and playing good tennis,” Dodig said during the trophy ceremony. “We are having a lot of fun and hopefully it is going to continue.”
The duo dominated the final at Rod Laver Arena, breaking their opponents’ serve once in each set during the 88-minute contest.
Such was their domination that they created 15 breakpoint opportunities in the match while not allowing Ram and Salisbury a single look at their own serve.
The defeat denied Ram, 36, a double at Melbourne Park this year after he paired with Barbora Krejcikova to win the mixed doubles title on Saturday.
“Filip, I know it’s your first Grand Slam,” Ram said. “That was way too good. Not sure what we could have done any different, so you guys played awesome.”