Draganja/Mergea Cap Giant-Killing Run In Hamburg
by ATP Staff|
Marin Draganja and Florin Mergea won their first ATP World Tour team title in style on Sunday, capping their giant-killing run by upsetting top seeds Alexander Peya and Bruno Soares 6-4, 7-5 in the final of the bet-at-home Open in Hamburg.
"I still don't believe it," said Draganja. "To win our first title at an [ATP World Tour] 500, I don't know what to say. They are a very, very strong team. They don't give you any easy mistakes; you have to win all the points. We managed to stay strong until the end."
The Croatian/Romanian duo earned 500 Emirates ATP Doubles Team Rankings points and shared €84,970 in prize money. En route to their maiden final together, they had also ousted fourth seeds Jamie Murray and John Peers in the semi-finals and second seeds David Marrero and Fernando Verdasco in the quarter-finals.
In their recent tour-level debut, Draganja and Mergea had reached the semi-finals at Roland Garros (l. to Granollers/Lopez), having beaten Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic in the quarter-finals.
"We barely got into [the draw] here; we were lucky to get in," said Mergea. "We've beaten some incredible teams along the way and we're really happy with the way we've played. It's a continuation from Roland Garros. We're thrilled to get the win today.
"It was a very difficult match. It was pretty hot out there today. We tried to focus on our serves and then we were happy when the breaks came."
The 23-year-old Draganja won his first ATP World Tour doubles title, having finished runner-up in his maiden final alongside Mate Pavic in Chennai at the start of the year. Mergea, 29, captured his third trophy and second of the season, following victory in Vina del Mar with Oliver Marach as his partner.
World No. 3 pairing Peya and Soares were chasing their second title in their sixth final together this season. The Austrian/Brazilian duo received 300 ranking points to boost their chances of qualifying for the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals. They are currently fifth in the Doubles Team Race To London.