Jonathan Erlich claimed his first doubles tennis title in two years after he won the Chengdu Open on Sunday.
The 40-year-old was teaming up with Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi for the first time and the duo only signed up for the tournament five minutes before the deadline.
Beating Marcus Daniell and Marcelo Demoliner 6-3, 7-6 in the final, which lasted 89 minutes, the victory was Erlich’s 19th doubles career title, spanning over 12 seasons.
Speaking after the win, he said: “We came here with really good energy. Both of us were really excited to play together and gave a lot of confidence to each other on the court. We executed really well this week.
“I said to Aisam that this was one of the best matches he’s played and we’ve played against each other many times. It was a really high level today. I trust him 100 percent on the court and when you trust your partner, you’re taking two steps forward already. I’m happy we played four matches like that.”
— Aisam ul Haq Qureshi (@aisamhqureshi) October 1, 2017
The former world number five last won the Shenzhen Open in 2015, and his partner for his latest win was full of praise for him. Qureshi said: “This week is very special, when I came here, I was on one leg and I had an MRI and wasn’t sure if I would even play.
“I signed up with Jon five minutes before the deadline. He was still in Israel. He took the risk and flew all the way here on Sunday. Thanks to him for trusting in me. I just focused on being the best partner I can be. He showed why he’s won Wimbledon before, why he’s been in the top five and has won 19 titles. Everything he touched was a winner. He took over.”
Earning 250 Emirates ATP Doubles Rankings points, the pair will also split the £72,000 prize money.