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Rohan Bopanna Qualifies for Aus Open Men's Doubles Final for the First Time

#AustralianOpen | Rohan Bopanna and Matthew Ebden's men's doubles pair stormed into the finals.

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Tennis
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A day after assuring the world number 1 rankings, Indian veteran tennis player Rohan Bopanna, partnering Australian Matthew Ebden, sailed into the Australian Open men's doubles final after a win over Czech-Chinese pair of Tomas Machac and Zhizhen Zhang.

The second-seed Indo-Aussie pair defeated Zhizhen and Machac 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (10-7) at the Rod Laver Arena on Thursday (25 January). In his 17th Australian Open appearance, the 43-year-old Indian has advanced to the men’s doubles finals at Melbourne Park for the first time. He had never previously progressed beyond the third round in a men’s doubles draw at the tournament.

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Notably, Bopanna and Ebden reached their second consecutive Grand Slam final as a pair. The pair had previously registered a 6-4, 7-6 (7-5) quarterfinal victory against sixth-seeded Argentines Maximo Gonzalez and Andres Molteni on Wednesday (24 January).

The triumph guarantees that Bopanna will rise to the top of the ATP Tour doubles rankings after the tournament, making him the oldest first-time world number 1 in history.

He will become the fourth Indian tennis player to reach world number 1 in doubles after Olympic bronze medallist Leander Paes, Mahesh Bhupathi and Sania Mirza.

Last year the Indian ace became the oldest man to qualify for a grand slam final in the Open era, when he and Ebden reached the US Open final. Bopanna additionally boasts the distinction of being the oldest player to clinch a men's doubles title at a Masters event. This achievement was accomplished last year at the age of 43 when he, along with Ebden, emerged victorious at Indian Wells.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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