Marrero & Verdasco Take Down the Bryan Brothers to Clinch ATP World Tour Finals Doubles Title

The first time’s the charm for David Marrero and Fernando Verdasco

Following their unexpected win in the semifinals at their first-ever ATP World Tour Finals, the Spanish tenistas upset the top-seeded Bryan brothers to win the doubles title at the O2 Arena.

David Marrero & Fernando VerdascoDavid Marrero & Fernando Verdasco

The sixth seeds had never even qualified for the year-end tournament before and had lost all three of their previous matches against the world No 1 partnership. But they triumphed in a stellar match 7-5 6-7 (3-7) 10-7.

They saved four set points in the first set, Verdasco recovering from 0-40 down at 4-5, and the left-hander, still one of the most dangerous customers on the singles circuit, was the key man in a gripping contest.

David Marrero & Fernando Verdasco

In the next game, Mike Bryan double faulted at 15/30 to gift two break point opportunities to Marrero and Verdasco. He saved the first with a fine backhand crosscourt winner, but Verdasco clinched the game when his stinging forehand was too much for Bob Bryan, who could only volley long.

And the Spaniards clinched the next game to win the first set.

Verdasco’s forehand, one of the most devastating and feared shots on the men’s tour, got the Spaniards out of trouble time and time again. But the American twins – who had won the title three times before – hit back to level it up by winning the second set on the tiebreak.

There was just one mini-break in the deciding Champions tiebreak and it was set up by another sensational Verdasco forehand down-the-line winner.

On match point Bob Bryan could only chip a Verdasco serve long and the sixth seeds could celebrate becoming the third all-Spanish pair to win the title after Juan Gisbert and Manuel Orantes in 1975 and last year’s champions Marcel Granollers and Marc Lopez.

The Bryans finished No 1 for a fifth straight year and a record ninth time overall. They have won 11 titles this season, including the Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon.

Granollers & Lopez Claim First ATP World Tour Finals Doubles Title

Marcel Granollers and Marc Lopez have claimed their first ATP World Tour Finals doubles title…

The 26-year-old and 30-year-old Spaniards beat India’s Mahesh Bhupathi and Rohan Bopanna 7-5 3-6 10-3 in a dramatic final at the O2 Arena to win the title.

Marcel Granollers & Marc Lopez

“We finished here winning the title, so it’s incredible for us. We try to play as best as we can always; I think we have very good relationship. So, I think, that’s one of the key of our success,” said Granollers after the victory. “Marc is one of my best friends. To win here with him is very special. Thanks to the ATP for a great tournament and to Barclays for supporting our sport.”

In their debut as a team at the year-end tournament, Granollers and Lopez – the first Spanish duo to play at the ATP World Tour Finals since Sergio Casal and Emilio Sanchez in 1994 – became the first Spaniards to win the coveted trophy since Juan Gisbert and Manuel Orantes in 1975.

Marc Lopez & Marcel Granollers

“It’s always tough playing them,” said Bhupathi. “They’re not a conventional doubles team. They make it very, very difficult in more ways than one, no matter who they play. We were expecting that. We fought hard to stay in the match. [We] got ourselves again into a match tiebreak. This time I think we just played a bad tiebreak. That sums it up.”

It’s the third title of the year for the Spaniards, seeded sixth out of the eight doubles teams at the ATP World Tour Finals. They also won in Rome and Gstaad.

The pair, who ends the season with a career-high ranking of No. 6 in the world, will next compete for Spain in next week’s Davis Cup final against the Czech Republic in Prague.