Tennis: Kiwi Michael Venus, Raven Klaasen beaten in Wimbledon doubles final

Author
NZ Herald,
Section
Tennis,
Publish Date
Sunday, 15 July 2018, 10:38AM
South Africa's Raven Klaasen, left, and New Zealand's Michael Venus touch hands during their men's doubles final match against Mike Bryan and Jack Sock. (Photo / AP)
South Africa's Raven Klaasen, left, and New Zealand's Michael Venus touch hands during their men's doubles final match against Mike Bryan and Jack Sock. (Photo / AP)

Michael Venus and Raven Klaasen have finished runners-up in the men's doubles at Wimbledon, falling to American duo Mike Bryan and Jack Sock in a five-set thriller.

Sock and Bryan won the match 6-3 6-7 6-3 5-7 7-5 in just over three and a half hours.

Venus and South African playing partner Klaasen played two five set matches on their way to the final, but were unable to get the better of their American counterparts in the late stages of the fifth set in the final.

Venus will collect $247,000 in prize money for his efforts in the men's and mixed doubles - where he made the semifinals.

The ranking points picked up for making this final should ensure he and Klaasen are able to keep playing in the ATP Masters 1000 tournaments for probably another year.

For the first time during this Wimbledon, Venus and Klaasen weren't able to break their opponent's serve in a match and while Venus served big throughout the final, Klaasen was often under pressure on his serve.

South Africa's Raven Klaasen, right, and New Zealand's Michael Venus return the ball to Mike Bryan and Jack Sock of the United States during their men's doubles final. Photo / AP.

South Africa's Raven Klaasen, right, and New Zealand's Michael Venus return the ball to Mike Bryan and Jack Sock of the United States during their men's doubles final. (Photo / AP)

Although the ladies' singles final, which was won by Angelique Kerber over Serena Williams, 6-3 6-3, only lasted 65 minutes, the first match on Centre Court, between Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal took an eternity to finish, with the Serbian winning 10-8 in the fifth set.

It meant that the doubles final didn't start until just after 6pm and with Centre Court just a quarter full.

However, the crowd did build up over the match and those that hung around witnessed an entertaining and high quality doubles final that reached a gripping conclusion, even if it didn't go the way of the Kiwi and South African.

Klaasen was broken in the eighth game of the match, allowing Sock to serve for the set, which he did, dropping just one point.

The final was squared with Venus and Klaasen winning the second set tiebreak 9-7, but they quickly fell behind 3-0 in the third, with Venus being broken.

The fourth went with serve until Bryan was serving at 5-6. He offered up a few set points which Venus and Klaasen couldn't convert, but on the next, when taking a second serve, he was adjudged to have foot faulted, gifting the set to Venus and Klaasen.

The roof had to be closed for the fifth set, so there was a delay of around 15 minutes and when the match resumed the tension built as neither team were able to get a break.
But one did eventually come on Klaasen's serve a 5-5, putting the match on Bryan's next service game.

On championship point, there was an exchange at the net until Klaasen put a volley into the net and that was it, Bryan and Sock became the champions, while Venus and Klaasen make do with being the runners up.

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