Michael Burgess is the football and rugby league writer for the Herald on Sunday.

Tennis: Kiwi crowned doubles champion

Michael Venus and Mate Pavic celebrate their success in the ASB Classic doubles final. Photo / Doug Sherring
Michael Venus and Mate Pavic celebrate their success in the ASB Classic doubles final. Photo / Doug Sherring

Kiwi Michael Venus and Croatian Mate Pavic have taken the ASB Classic doubles title, after a 7-5 6-4 win over seasoned American duo Eric Butorac and Scott Lipsky.

In just their career fourth final, it was a superb performance from Venus and Pavic against the two veterans, who have 31 career titles between them.

It's the first time a New Zealander has triumphed on finals day in Auckland since 2010, when Marcus Daniell lifted the trophy alongside Horia Tecau.

Venus and Pavic were strong on serve, secure from the baseline and quick on the volley. In contrast Lipsky in particular struggled all day with his return of serve, which eventually became an insurmountable weakness.

In the opening set games went with serve until the eleventh game, when some moments of brilliance from Pavic gave the Kiwi-Croatian combination four break points, and they were good enough to convert their second.

The Croatian, who first teamed up with Venus early last year, then showed impressive composure to serve out the set in the next game.

Venus and Pavic then had all the momentum and after securing a break early in the second set, the Kiwi-Croat combination noticeably lifted. They held on to their break with relative ease to take their second ATP title together.

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter

SIGN UP NOW

© Copyright 2016, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production bpcf05 at 26 Sep 2016 12:19:26 Processing Time: 584ms