Herbert/Mahut Secure Wimbledon Title
Top seeds prevail in all-French final
Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut are Wimbledon champions.
The top seeds overcame countrymen Julien Benneteau and Edouard Roger-Vasselin 6-4, 7-6(1), 6-3 in just over two hours to secure their second Grand Slam title (2015 US Open) and first at the All England Club. It was the first all-French doubles final at Wimbledon in the Open Era. The most recent all-French team to win the men’s doubles title at SW19 was Arnaud Clement and Michael Llodra in 2007.
“I’ve said ever since I started playing tennis that Wimbledon is the greatest tournament,” Mahut said. “When you win the match point in the final, you just realise that you're going to have your name written on the trophy and everywhere. Being the champions here in Wimbledon, it's a dream come true for me.
“We are good friends. We play together, so we stay together. Even if sometimes we're going to lose some matches, we know at the end of the year, we are going to win more than we're going to lose. Sometimes doubles players, once they lose one, two, three matches, then they want to split. Because we like each other, we like to spend time together, we like to spend time on the court and off the court, this is something we don't even think about changing.
“What makes us a little bit more special is the fact that we're both playing an offensive game, going to the net, but a little bit in a different way,” Herbert said. “I think Nico is more the guy who puts up the numbers, the guy who is going to serve 80 per cent of first serves and make 90 per cent of his volleys. He's not going to miss. He's going to be the guy who is the solid player on his side.
“Me, I'm maybe playing the same game, going to the net, but having my moments in a game. Maybe having, I don't know, a good moment for three games. I'm not as consistent as he is. But I think it's quite difficult for the other teams to know how to play us.”
Saturday’s match snapped a streak of 11 Grand Slam championships won by different doubles teams and cemented Herbert and Mahut’s position as the best doubles team in 2016. They have won five titles this year, including the first three ATP World Tour Masters 1000 events of the season.
|2013 US Open||Paes/Stepanek|
|2014 Australian Open||Kubot/Lindstedt|
|2014 Roland Garros|| Benneteau/Roger-Vasselin
|2014 US Open||Bryan/Bryan|
|2015 Australian Open||Bolelli/Fognini|
|2015 Roland Garros||Dodig/Melo|
|2015 Wimbledon|| Rojer/Tecau
|2015 US Open||Herbert/Mahut|
|2016 Australian Open||Murray/Soares|
|2016 Roland Garros|| Lopez/Lopez
Herbert and Mahut’s efficient serving paved their way to victory. They won 65 per cent of second-serve points to their opponents’ 47 per cent and saved all four break points faced. Herbert, at 25 the youngest player on the court, returned from the ad court and was instrumental in securing three breaks of serve for his side (3/12).
Mahut was overcome with emotion and fell to the court after his team converted their third match point. The 34 year old captured the Boy’s Singles title at Wimbledon 16 years ago and was facing two friends and former doubles partners. Benneteau and Mahut, born a month apart, enjoyed a successful partnership in the junior ranks, winning the 1999 US Open juniors doubles together and being named the year’s ITF Junior Boys’ Doubles World Champions. At tour-level, Benneteau and Mahut won two ATP World Tour titles and reached two US Open semi-finals (2004 and 2007) while Mahut and Roger-Vasselin captured four ATP World Tour titles as a team between 2012 and 2013.
The fortnight marked a return to form for Benneteau and Roger-Vasselin. They renewed their partnership earlier this year after Benneteau recovered from an adductor injury which kept him out of action for nearly a year. In their only previous Grand Slam final, the duo beat Marcel Granollers and Marc Lopez to secure the 2014 Roland Garros title.
Herbert and Mahut earned 2,000 Emirates ATP Doubles Rankings points and £350,000, while Benneteau and Roger-Vasselin will split 1,200 points and £175,000