Bryan twins set tennis record in doubles
It happens almost never at a tennis tournament that the doubles winners get interviewed on national TV and have their gear snatched up to be sent immediately to the International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport, R.I., while the singles finalists are still going on about their business.
But that’s how Sunday afternoon went for the 32-year-old Bryan twins, Mike and Bob.
They are now the winningest men’s doubles pairing after a 6-7 (6), 6-2, 10-7 victory over Eric Butorac and Jean-Julien Rojer of the Netherland Antilles in the doubles final of the Farmers Classic at the Los Angeles Tennis Center.
The top-seeded Bryans, from Camarillo, were playing in their 100th final. This was their sixth title at their hometown tournament, but none meant quite so much as this.
“Sixty-two, I’ll never forget that number,” Bob said. “It’s been an emotional ride talking about it every day for the last couple of months. Definitely there were nerves out there, and in that first set it felt like we couldn’t get the pickle out of the jar. The legs felt like jelly, the arms like spaghetti.”
On hand to congratulate the Bryans in their emotional post-match celebration was one half of the previous record-holding team, Mark Woodforde.
Woodforde and partner Todd Woodbridge held the record of 61 titles for nearly a decade and Woodforde said he was proud to say “well done” to Bob and Mike.
“The Bryans and their father [Wayne] have been great for keeping doubles going,” Woodforde said.
Mike Bryan said the 62nd win was unfathomable not so long ago.
“The Woodies put a record way out there,” Mike said. “Sixty-one was Mt. Everest when we started out.”
The brothers said they expect to play until they are 40. Woodforde suggested 70 or 80 or even 100 titles were possible. Mike wouldn’t look that far ahead.
“We’re just happy with No. 62,” he said.