CHENNAI: The unseeded Indo-British combination of Arjun Kadhe and Jay Clarke clinched the Chennai Open Challenger doubles crown with a straight-set win over the Sebastian Ofner-Nino Serdarusic duo in the final at the SDAT Tennis Stadium here on Saturday.
Kadhe and Clarke were too good for their opponents on the day as they needed only 58 minutes to defeat Ofner (Austria) and Nino (Croatia) 6-0, 6-4. By winning the doubles title, Kadhe put the host nation on the top of the podium while Clarke, who had gone down to India’s Sumit Nagal in the singles quarter-finals, ended the tournament on a high.
Kadhe and Clarke broke thrice – Ofner’s serve twice and Nino’s serve once – to sweep the opening set in double quick time. The Indo-British pair then bagged the all-important break in the 10th game of the second set to close out the contest.
Addressing the media after the presentation ceremony, Kadhe, placed 139 in the ATP doubles rankings, stressed that the roaring start in the final helped them massively to go all the way. “The first set, I feel like it went really quickly. Serving, we started well. I feel like they (Ofner and Nino) played slow on their first service games. We were off to a flyer; we did not do many things wrong,” said Kadhe.
“When you win a good first set with a big lead, you know that the match is done when one or two things fall in place [in the second set]. The key was the good start. It was great that we did not relax, stepped on the gas and finished the job,” added Kadhe.
On his part, Clarke, for whom singles is priority, said that he and his partner took the attack to the opposition from the very beginning.
“I do enjoy doubles, but I do not play it much. The fact that we both were able to return well and put pressure on every one of our service games… that gave us a lot of freedom to kind of enjoy it. We were brave on points, where maybe other players would have thought of making them (Ofner and Nino) play. We stepped it up and really took it to them,” said Clarke, who overcame singles disappointment admirably.
“It is what it is. As a singles player, you lose almost every week. There is only one winner. I enjoy doubles. I also like the person I played with (Kadhe); that helps a lot as well. I improved through the course of the tournament,” Clarke went on to add.
RESULT:Doubles: Final: Jay Clarke/Arjun Kadhe bt Sebastian Ofner/Nino Serdarusic 6-0, 6-4
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