Rohan Bopanna, 43, becomes the oldest Indian Wells champion

Rohan Bopanna, 43, becomes the oldest Indian Wells champion

Rohan Bopanna and Matthew Ebden defeated top seeds Wesley Koolhof and Neil Skupsky.© Twitter

India’s Rohan Bopanna became the oldest ATP Masters 1000 champion when he and Australian partner Matt Ebden won the men’s doubles title at the BNP Paribas Open. The 43-year-old Bopanna and 35-year-old Ebden beat top seeds Wesley Koolhof of the Netherlands and Neil Skupsky of Britain 6-3, 2-6, 10-8 in the final on Saturday. “Really special. It’s called tennis paradise for a reason,” said Bopanna, playing in his 10th ATP Masters 1000 final.

“I’ve been coming here for many years and watching all these guys win for so many years. I’m really happy that Matt and I were able to do this and get this title here.

“It’s been some tough matches, close matches. Today we played against one of the best teams out there. Really glad we got the trophy.” Bopanna thus surpassed Canada’s Daniel Nestor, who claimed the title as the oldest champion at the 2015 Cincinnati Masters at the age of 42.

He joked, “I talked to Danny Nestor and I told him I’m sorry I’m going to break his record.” “Winning the title, that stays with me, really happy with it.” It was the 43-year-old’s fifth Masters 1000 doubles title and first since winning at Monte Carlo in 2017. It was the third final of the year for the Indo-Australian pair. He now has 24 Tour-level trophies in his cabinet.

The Indo-Australian pair stunned defending and two-time Desert Champions John Isner and Jack Sock in the semi-finals before getting the better of Canadian singles stars Felix Auger-Aliassime and Denis Shapovalov in the quarters.

Bopanna and Ebden defeated Rafael Matos and David Vega Hernandez in their opening match.

Former World No. 3 Bopanna has jumped four places to be 11th in the Pepperstone ATP Live Doubles rankings.

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