By Ros Satar

  • Joe Salisbury/Rajeev Ram [11] v Max Purcell/Luke Saville [WC]
  • First meeting
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – In a first meeting for both teams, all four players are bidding to win their first Grand Slam titles.

 

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Joe Salisbury/Rajeev Ram [11] v Max Purcell/Luke Saville [WC] | First Meeting

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In what is another great advert for American college tennis, Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury (both former college tennis players) are bidding to make a little bit of history. Ram is bidding to become the first American men’s doubles champion (other than the Bryan Brothers) since Rick Leach won the title here with South Africa’s Ellis Ferreira (2000). Salisbury will bid to be just the second British man to win the Australian Open men’s doubles title in the Open Era since Jamie Murray (with Bruno Soares) in 2016.

Max Purcell and Luke Saville will look to be the first all-Australian team to win the men’s double title since Todd Woodbridge and Mark Woodforde won a second title in 1997. They are also bidding to be the first wild-cards in the Open Era to claim the crown, and the first since Jonathan Marray and Frederik Nielsen win the 2012 Wimbledon title.

This is Ram/Salibsury’s fifth Slam as a team and if they win, Ram will go to the top of the list of the most attempts before winning a Grand Slam men’s doubles title (58). It will be Ram’s 14th Australian Open men’s doubles appearance.

This is the Brit/American duo’s best Grand Slam doubles result as a team, having reached the quarter-finals of Roland Garros last year. Last year here was their first Grand Slam event as a team where they went out in the third round.

They won titles in Dubai and Vienna last year, finished as runners-up at Queen’s and Antwerp and qualified for the ATP Finals, but failed to progress beyond the round robin stage.

 

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The all-Aussie pair have registered their best Grand Slam performance both individually and as a team. They reached the second round ere as a wild-card team in 2018 and fell in the first round last year.

If the name Saville seems familiar – he was a very good junior, winning the boys’ singles title at Wimbledon (2011) and the Australian Open (2012) and reached a career singles high of No. 152 in February 2015 (currently ranked 306). He fell in the second round of qualifying for the men’s singles this year.

Purcell made it through qualifying but fell in the first round, and is projected to rise to a career high singles rank of 204 after the tournament. Purcell/Saville won seven Challenger doubles titles in  2019.

The No. 11 seeds certainly start as the favourites in terms of experience on the tour, but the Aussies will have a lot of support.

The Men’s Doubles Final will take place on Rod Laver Arena at 3pm (4am GMT).

 

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