Paes, Dlouhy win French Open doublesJune 7th, 2009 - 12:58 am ICT by IANS
Paris, June 6 (IANS) India’s Leander Paes and Czech Lukas Dlouhy rallied from a set down to overpower South African Wesley Moodie and Belgian Dick Norman to clinch the French Open doubles title at Roland Garros here Saturday for their first Grand Slam together.
Third-seeded Paes and Dlouhy won 3-6, 6-3, 6-2 to triumph in an hour and 40 minutes.
Paes, who will celebrate his 36th birthday June 17, could not have hoped for a better gift as he clinched his third French Open doubles title and fifth overall.
The Indian’s previous win here came with compatriot Mahesh Bhupathi (1999, 2001). He also won Wimbledon (Bhupathi, 1999) and the US Open (Martin Damm, 2006).
Overall this was Paes’ ninth Grand Slam title, which includes four mixed doubles crowns. His mixed doubles title have come with Lisa Raymond (Wimbledon, 1999) Martina Navratilova (Australian Open 2003 and Wimbledon, 2003) and Cara Black (US Open, 2008).
For Dlouhy, who is 10 years Paes’ junior, it was his first Grand Slam title. He was runner-up in 2007 with Pavel Vizner.
The Indo-Czech pair first joined forces at Roland Garros last season, reaching their first major final at the US Open last September - finishing runners-up to Bob and Mike Bryan.
They won their first ATP World Tour title at Bangkok in October 2008 and were runners-up at three other tournaments, most recently at Rotterdam in February where they lost to nemesis Ninad Zimonjic and Daniel Nestor.
“We began as a team exactly a year back. It has been a very special week for us. When we lost last time, we were determined to come back and win here. Thanks to all the Indians supporters who came here and cheered for us,” Paes said later.
Paes and Dlouhy, who upset top seeds Zimonjic and Nestor in the semi-final, were broken early to go 0-3 down in the first set. They staged a fightback in the second and were cruising 5-0 ahead before Norman held. Paes was serving for the set in the seventh game but dropped his serve to make it 5-2.
Dlouhy then held his serve to make it a set-all.
In the decider, Paes and Dlouhy broke Moody twice for a 5-2 lead. Serving for the championship, Paes wrapped the set and the match with an ace.
The Indian ran up to hug his former mixed doubles partner and good friend Navratilova in the stands after the win.
“I want to thank Martina for giving me strength in the third set,” Paes said.
Paes also praised his opponents for giving them a tough fight.
“They served really big and made it tough for us,” he said.
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- Paes wins Wimbledon mixed doubles for 12th Grand Slam (Lead) - Jul 05, 2010
- Bhupathi's unique mixed doubles record - Jun 08, 2012
- French Open: Paes loses in doubles final (Lead) - Jun 06, 2010
- French Open: Paes on course for his 12th Grand Slam - Jun 03, 2010
- Paes, Vesnina go down fighting in Wimbledon final - Jul 09, 2012
- Paes-Stepanek shock Bryan brothers; lift Australian Open men's doubles title (Lead) - Jan 28, 2012
- Leander Paes's 12 Grand Slam titles - Jul 05, 2010
- Paes-Vesnina go down fighting in Australian Open final (Lead) - Jan 29, 2012
- Grand Slam titles won by Leander Paes (To go with Paes-Dlouhy topple...) - Sep 14, 2009
- Paes brings cheer on a day cricketers cave in - Jan 28, 2012
- Paes thanks Stepanek for helping him win Australian Open - Jan 28, 2012
- Fact File: Leander Paes's men's doubles titles at majors - Jan 28, 2012
- Leander Paes and Lukas Dlouhy win 2009 French Open - Jun 07, 2009
- Bhupathi-Bopanna crash out of Aegon Championships - Jun 16, 2012
Tags: atp world tour, australian open 2003, bob and mike, bob and mike bryan, cara black, daniel nestor, dick norman, french open doubles, grand slam title, leander paes, lisa raymond, lukas dlouhy, mahesh bhupathi, martin damm, martina navratilova, pavel vizner, roland garros, wesley moodie, wimbledon 2003, zimonjic