PAP / EPA / NEIL HALL / Pictured: Mate Pavić and Nikola Mekti, the 2021 Wimbledon champions in the men’s doubles
Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic are having a great season. They’ve won seven titles, are number one in the rankings, and have already made sure to qualify for the ATP Finals. However, they did not perform well in the Grand Slam tournaments. They were eliminated from the semi-finals of the Australian Open, and did not appear at Roland Garros due to positive results of a coronavirus test. But on Saturday, they capped the past six months by winning Wimbledon.
The Croats who made their way to the finals, among others ukasz Kubota and Marcelo Melo on Saturday gave what has been impressive since the start of the year – strong serve, fantastic returns, amazing skills and reflexes at the net. Thanks to these qualities, they beat Marcel Granollers of Spain 6:4, 7:6 (5), 2:6, 7:5 and Horacio Zeballos of Argentina.
In the first set, the Zeballos service breakthrough, which the Croats won in the seventh game, turned out to be decisive. In the second match, both pairs were doing a great job with their passes, and there was a tiebreak, as the battle continued point by point, even 6-5 for Miktik and Pavek Granollers, a double-serve foul.
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The Granollers and Zeballos didn’t lay down their guns after losing two sets and started the third set fantastically – they broke their opponents twice. And so they advanced 4-0 and did not waste this advantage.
In turn, in the fourth installment, Mekti and Pavi had the initiative. They had opportunities, including a match in the 10th inning, but they weren’t able to take advantage of them. When it seemed like a tiebreak would be necessary again, the Croatians scored the second ball. It then led to a stunning exchange, which Pavic, 28, ended up with a solid smash.
After the last ball of the match, Mektic and Pavic fell on the field with tears in their eyes. They fulfilled their big dream – they won Wimbledon and became the first Croatian couple in history to win a championship title.
For Mektic, this is their first Grand Slam doubles tournament. For Pavic – the third (in 2018 he won the Australian Open with Oliver Marach, and in 2020 the US Open with Bruno Soares).
In turn, the Granollers and Zeballos lost for the second time in the Grand Slam final (at the 2019 US Open they lost to Juan Sebastian Cabal/Robert Farah). Both still have to wait for the Grand Slam trophy in the doubles. For the Spaniard, this is the fourth final match he has lost.
Championships, Wimbledon (UK)
Grand Slam, grass pitches, total prize money of 35 million pounds
Saturday 10 July
My husband is final:
Nikola Mektic (Croatia, 1) / Mate Pavic (Croatia, 1) – Marcel Granollers (Spain, 4) / Horacio Zeballos (Argentina, 4) 6-4, 7-6 (5), 2-6, 7-5
Space feast in Wimbledon final! The situation was changing like a kaleidoscope
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Great Britain London Grand Slam ITF ATP Spain Argentina Tennis Horacio Zeballos Marcel Granollers Wimbledon Mate Pavic Nikola Mektic