Marcus Daniell and Wesley Koolhof are the Brisbane International 2019 champions, winning their first title together over fourth seeds Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury on Sunday.
The unseeded Kiwi-Dutch pairing went one better than their previous best runners-up showing in Stockholm last season with a 6-4 7-6(6) victory over the American-British duo.
“We started together on the grass last year, and we had some good results, we had some bad results,” Daniell said.
“There wasn’t quite enough consistency, and we had a really big deep chat at the end of the year about what we needed to work on individually and as a team to be a competitor for the top eight at the end of 2019, and I think we both went away and put a lot of time and effort into those things, and I think it’s paying off.
“The feeling that we’ve had from the first practice here this week has been great, and just built on it match after match, and it’s about as good of start as you could ask for for the year and we’re just going to keep building on it.”
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Daniell/Koolhof had narrowly edged Australians John-Patrick Smith and John Millman in a match tie-break in the semi-finals to reach Sunday’s decider before seeing off the first seeded pairing they had encountered in the draw in 88 minutes.
The win marked a fourth career doubles title for both 29-year-olds.
“They’re actually pretty fair, the Aussie crowd,” Daniell said. “Obviously they’re behind the Aussies [in the semi-finals], but if we played a great point, there was some noise for that, which is more than you can ask for really. It’s pretty special.
“It is. It’s a big crowd, big court, and to be able to play two matches on centre court in a row, for doubles, it’s not that common,” Koolhof added.