By defending their title at the International Tennis Championships in Delray Beach, Mike and Bob Bryan collected their 58th career doubles trophy. The Bryans defeated Phillip Marx and Igor Zelenay 6-3,7-6. In so doing, Mike and Bob surpass Peter Fleming and John McEnroe to become the second winningest doubles team.
Both Marx and Zelenay were making their debut in an ATP tour final and the Bryans took advantage of their opponents’ inexperience early on. After an expeditious opening game by Mike, Bob stuck a forehand volley winner for three break chances. When Marx dumped a volley into the net after a low return by Mike, the Bryans had the break. With another quick game, the brothers widened their lead to 3-0. On Zelenay’s serve, another volley mistake gave the Bryans a look at three opportunities for a double break lead. However, by forcing a couple of errors from his opponents, Zelenay guarded serve. Thereafter, each team comfortably held until the ninth game when Mike served for the set. After arriving at two set points, the Bryans netted a forehand and with Marx producing a forehand down the line winner, they faced a deciding point. Luckily, a superb serve by Mike resulted in a Zelenay return error leading to the Bryans bedding the first set.
Once Zelenay and Marx settled down after being broken in the initial set, they gave their adversaries quite a battle. These two pushed the Bryans to 40-30 numerous times. Finally with Bob serving at 3-4, as a result of a double fault and a backhand error, Zelenay and Marx obtained 30-40. However, with stellar serves, Bob helped to equalize the set at 4 all. With neither party able to manufacture break points, the set went to a tiebreaker. With Marx punching a mid-court forehand long, the Bryans had a mini-break lead for 1-0. Then, with a low return, team Bryan caused Marx to volley up and built a 4-1 advantage. Later, Marx double faulted to give the Bryans four set points. On the Bryans’ second match point, Bob put away a backhand volley to seal the championship.
The Bryans were overjoyed to prevail. They affirmed that they “love coming back to [Delray] and [that] there’s always room for more trophies”. With Davis Cup coming up in Serbia this week, Bob and Mike felt that Delray was a great way to prepare. This victory “gives us momentum”. They also tipped their hat to Marx and Zelenay because they put up a good fight; “they played really well. . . we were fortunate today”.