Asian Games 2018: Bopanna, Sharan win tennis maiden doubles gold

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Asian Games 2018: Bopanna, Sharan win tennis maiden doubles gold

Bopanna and Sharan defeated Aleksander Bublik and Denis Yevseyev of Kazakhstan 6-3 6-4 in 52 minutes.

Top seeds Rohan Bopanna and Divij Sharan notched up their maiden men’s doubles gold medal at the Asian Games, dominating the final clash with a thoroughly clinical performance in Palembang on Friday.

Bopanna and Sharan defeated Aleksander Bublik and Denis Yevseyev of Kazakhstan 6-3 6-4 in 52 minutes.

Less than 20 minutes into the match, the Indians were 4-1 ahead, breaking Bublik and Yevseyev at the very first opportunity they got.

In no time, the top seeds were serving for the set with a 5-3 lead and Bopanna’s booming serve wrapped it up in style for them.

The Kazakhs had their moments but were undone by erratic play — a brilliant cross-court backhand winner one moment and a powerless return buried in the nets the very next minute.

In contrast, Bopanna and Sharan’s easy camaraderie shone through in the match and they displayed near-perfect on-court coordination.

Bopanna was particularly formidable from the baseline, displaying a good range of strokes to pull off some tough winners, helped by his brute power.

The second set went slightly better for Bublik and Yevseyev but they just could not rein in the unforced errors, including a double fault in the fifth game which could have cost them.

The Kazakhs had the faster legs between the two pairs but the Indians had the experience to negate that.

At 3-3, Bopanna and Sharan clinched the all-important break to go up and though they were pushed a bit in the very next game, the top seeds held serve to grab a 5-3 lead.

The Kazakhs held on in the next game but it only delayed the inevitable.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by Daily Report and is published from a The Hindu.)

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