New dad Polasek wins 1st main doubles title in Australia

Croatia's Ivan Dodig, right, and Slovakia's Filip Polasek hold their trophy aloft after defeating Rajeev Ram of the US and Britain's Joe Salisbury in the men's doubles final at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021.(AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)

Croatia’s Ivan Dodig, proper, and Slovakia’s Filip Polasek maintain their trophy aloft after defeating Rajeev Ram of the US and Britain’s Joe Salisbury within the males’s doubles closing on the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021.(AP Photograph/Andy Brownbill)


Filip Polasek has had a weekend he’ll always remember, successful his first Grand Slam title a day after his second daughter was born.

Little marvel the 35-year-old Slovakian let loose a triumphant roar and fell into Croatian accomplice Ivan Dodig’s arms after the pair beat defending champions Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury 6-3, 6-4 on Sunday within the Australian Open males’s doubles closing.

Again and left leg accidents compelled Polasek to retire in 2013 and he was sidelined from the lads’s tour for 5 years, confined to teaching junior gamers, till he was satisfied to make a comeback in the midst of 2018.

“I by no means actually tried to come back again. It was an accident, a pleasant one. It’s simply occurred one way or the other. A pal of mine satisfied me to play membership matches in Germany,” he stated. “Then I noticed I don’t have the issues that I had earlier than.”

He stated he was hitting with American doubles star Mike Bryan across the identical time and “he was type of making enjoyable I ought to come again.”

“I used to be like, ‘no manner.’ Then just a few issues put collectively, I felt wholesome,” he added. “I stated I am going to attempt to come again.”

He took a month off teaching, with out pay. It has lastly paid off.

In his first Grand Slam closing, Polasek was one of the best participant on the court docket with sensible returns complementing a gradual serve to assist arrange the victory.

He’s the second Slovakian participant to win a significant title after four-time Grand Slam combined doubles champion Daniela Hantuchova.

Polasek had little sleep on Saturday night time earlier than his accomplice delivered their second daughter at a hospital close to Bratislava about midnight Friday in Melbourne time.

“It’s fairly unhappy,” to overlook the start, he stated, “however to finish it up this manner right here, it’s very good.

“I’ve the photographs and movies. That night time I didn’t have a lot sleep, I’ve to say. The great factor was we had one other day additional and I can sleep properly earlier than the ultimate.”

For Dodig it was a second main title, after the French Open doubles with Marcelo Melo in 2015.

Polasek and Dodig had 15 breakpoint alternatives and, considerably, took the 2 that counted on Salisbury’s serve within the eighth recreation of the primary set and seventh recreation of the second.

The Croatia-Slovak pair have been taken to deuce solely as soon as, so by no means felt the strain that consistently constructed when Salisbury and Ram stepped as much as serve.

Polasek served out the opening set to like and, fittingly, had that honor to complete off the victory, sealing it with the second match level when a Salisbury lob landed over the baseline.

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