French Open: Herbert, Mahut clinch doubles title, create history for France
Paris, June 13 (IANS): The French doubles pair of Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut fought back from a set and a break down at 4-5 to overcome Kazakhstan’s Alexander Bublik and Andrey Golubev 4-6, 7-6(1), 6-4 and clinch their second French Open title.
In a match that lasted two hours and 11 minutes, the duo became the first all-French team to triumph at Roland Garros twice. It is their fifth Grand Slam title overall, with the team having won the Australian Open, Wimbledon, and US Open titles once.
“At the end, we’re here with the trophy. It’s amazing,” said Mahut on Saturday.
“With the family, with our wives, sons, it’s something that you’re lucky when it happens once in your life. This is the second time for us. We could not be any happier tonight.”
“From the start to the end, we had amazing support,” Herbert added. “Maybe the best support I’ve had in my whole life for a two-week tournament. The final was terrible for me as I was tight the whole match. I wanted it so badly, maybe even more than the other four, so to win was really special,” he told atptour.com.
Before Saturday, the Frenchmen had not won a Grand Slam doubles title since claiming the Australian Open crown in 2019.
Herbert claimed this had dented their confidence, but it has now been “restored”.
“For us as a team, we’ve been kind of struggling. We have not won a really big title for a long time now. Coming into this tournament, we didn’t come with the same confidence as we did in the past.
“Being able to lift this trophy is just amazing because I think we won all these matches, not because we were better players, our level was not really better, but our behaviour on court. The way we stayed positive, the way we managed to play with the fears we had, that’s why now we can look at each other and say we had an amazing week,” he added.
After an even start, Bublik and Golubev, who were aiming to become the first Kazakh men to win a Grand Slam title in any discipline, won three games in a row from 2-2, breaking the 2018 Roland Garros champions twice to move 5-2 ahead.
Although the French pair did make it 4-5, Bublik and Golubev held serve to clinch the set.
From there on, the experience of the French pair showed as they took their opportunities, dominating around the net to win their 18th title together.