Bryan twins punch their way to complete set of Grand Slams
Monday 10 July 2006
America may be down to the bare bones in the singles competitions but the Bryan brothers, Bob and Mike, fist-pumped and chest-bumped their way to a historic victory for the Stars and Stripes this weekend by completing a career Grand Slam in the men's doubles. The twins, who have amassed a fortune from the doubles circuit (where Slam titles are usually worth around £200,000 a pop), took their first Wimbledon title on Saturday by beating the Frenchman Fabrice Santoro and his Serb partner, Nenad Zimonjic, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4, 6-2.
The victory means the Bryans, who are known in the US for their flamboyance on court, are only the third doubles team to win all four Slam titles in the professional era. They join the Dutch duo of Jacco Eltingh and Paul Haarhuis and Australia's Mark Woodforde and Todd Woodbridge.
"This was the last one to get and the one we've dreamed about," said Mike. "There's some legends on that board. It's gonna be sweet to say we're Wimbledon champions."
The Bryans were beaten in last year's final by Wesley Moodie and Stephen Huss. They were also competing in their seventh successive Slam final, having become the first men's doubles team in the professional era to reach six at this year's French Open.
Bob Bryan had less than an hour's respite after his victory in the men's event before he was required back on court in the mixed final, alongside Venus Williams. Again, a piece of Wimbledon history was made, but not by Bryan and Williams. That honour fell to Andy Ram, who became the first Israeli to win a Slam when he partnered Russia's Vera Zvonareva to see off a tired Bryan and an in-form Venus in straight sets, 6-3 6-2 in the final.
Bobproved to be the weak link in the American partnership and had his serve broken on numerous occasions. Zvonareva sealed the win on their first match point with a thundering ace.
Ram and Zvonareva had also played two matches on Saturday as they beat the former champions, the Zimbabwean siblings Wayne and Cara Black, 6-3, 7-6 in the semi-finals.
The last doubles final of the tournament was played last night, when the Chinese pair of Yan Zi and Zheng Jie went in search of another first for their country - a Wimbledon title - against Virginia Ruano Pascual and Paola Suarez. Earlier in the tournament, their compatriot Li Na had broken through the great wall of the fourth round to become the first person from China - man or woman - to make a Slam singles quarter-final. Yan and Zheng won China's first-ever Slam title in the doubles at this year's Australian Open.
MEN'S SINGLES FINAL
R FEDERER (Swit) bt R NADAL (Sp) 6-0 7-6 6-7 6-3.
WOMEN'S SINGLES FINAL
A MAURESMO (Fr) bt J HENIN-HARDENNE (Bel) 2-6 6-3 6-4.
MEN'S DOUBLES FINAL
B BRYAN and M BRYAN (US) bt F SANTORO (Fr) and N ZIMONJIC (Serb-M) 6-3 4-6 6-4 6-2.
MIXED DOUBLES SEMI-FINAL
V ZVONAREVA (Rus) and A RAM (Isr) bt C BLACK and W BLACK (Zim) 6-3 7-6.
ZVONAREVA and RAM bt V Williams and B Bryan (US) 6-3 6-2.
BOYS' SINGLES FINAL
T DE BAKKER (Neth) bt M Gawron (Pol) 6-2 7-6.
BOYS' DOUBLE SEMI-FINALS
K Damico and N Schnugg (US) bt N Mektic and V Siljegovic (Croa) 6-3 3-6 6-0; M Klizan and A Martin (Slovak) bt Lee Hsin Han (Taiw) and R Roy (Ind) 6-3 6-7 6-3.
Damico and Schnugg (US) bt Klizan and Martin 7-6 6-2.
GIRLS' SINGLES FINAL
C WOZNIACKI (Den) bt M RYBARIKOVA (Slovak) 3-6 6-1 6-3.
GIRLS' DOUBLES QUARTER-FINAL
U Radwanska (Pol) and A Rodionova (Rus) bt M Boonstra (Neth) and C Wozniacki (Den) 3-6 7-5 8-6.
K ANTONIYCHUK (Ukr) and A DULGHERU (Rom) bt S-M CIRSTEA (Rom) and A PANOVA (Rus) 6-2 6-4; A KLEYBANOVA and A PAVLYUCHENKOVA (Rus) bt Radwanska and Rodionova 7-6 7-6.
MEN'S OVER-35 DOUBLES FINAL
T Woodbridge and M Woodforde (Aus) bt T-J Middleton and D Wheaton (US) 6-7 7-5 7-6.
WOMEN'S OVER-35 DOUBLES FINAL
R D Nideffer (SA) and J Novotna (Cz Rep) bt T Austin (US) and N Tauziat (Fr) 6-4 6-3.
MEN'S OVER-45 DOUBLES FINAL
K Curren and J Kriek (US) bt P B McNamara and P F McNamee (Aus) 7-5 6-7 7-6.
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