There was something to cheer about from an Australian perspective as Matthew Ebden won the men’s doubles partner with veteran Rohan Bopanna on Saturday night at Rod Laver Arena.
Two Grand Slam titles between Bolelli and Ebden meant that they had tasted doubles success on the biggest stage, but new doubles world No.1 Bopanna was still searching for his maiden crown at 43 years of age.
The Italian duo produced plenty of swagger and flair from the get-go, pelting the ball from the baseline with power and precision to make for an entertaining clash.
A look at break point opportunities presented themselves for Eden and Bopanna in the first two receiving games, but weren’t able to neutralise their opponents’ dominance on serve when it mattered most.
Entertaining rallies and exciting play at the net made for a fantastic spectacle, needing a first-set tiebreak to separate the pairings.
A sensational period of tennis earned Eden and Bopanna a resounding 7-0 win in the breaker to grab the opening set and nudge one step closer to holding the trophy.
Throughout the tournament, Ebden and Bopanna have been clutch by winning all seven of their tiebreaks which speaks volumes about their understanding and valuable experience.
Once again, there were no breaks of serve up until 5-5 in the following set when the Aussie and Indian pair finally broke the deadlock to serve out for the match, finishing with a smash at the net to win their first-ever men’s doubles crown to win 7-6(0), 7-5 in one hour and 39 minutes.
Ebden and Bopanna both fell to the ground in pure elation and ecstasy having realised their life-long dream of becoming Grand Slam champions.
The No.1 doubles duo summed up their emotions in the post-match press conference.
“To win a slam here at home, I mean, I had some emotions similar, I won the mixed doubles here, but obviously the men's doubles it's a bigger event, obviously not the singles, but it's a big event,” said Ebden.
“To win my home slam after winning Wimbledon, I'm not going to lie, Wimbledon is a special place for us as tennis players, we know that, but this is equally as good or better doing it at home with our family, friends, and home fans in Australia.”
At 43, Bopanna has had many highs in his long career, but nothing equates to this special accomplishment.
“For me, without a doubt the best moment in my career. I mean, there is so many thoughts which are running. The head is like as if it's ready to explode, having so many things which are going on.”