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Ivan Dodig and Filip Polasek booked their places in the Australian Open doubles final on Thursday afternoon. The ninth seeds ended the 12-match winning streak of second-seeded Croatians Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 in one hour and 57 minutes.

Dodig and Polasek won five straight games from 4-4 in the second set to a 3-0 lead in the decider en route to avenging their loss in last month’s Antalya Open final, which Mektic and Pavic won 6-2, 6-4.

“It was my third Grand Slam semi-final, and the first time I made it through,” said Polasek, who spent five years away from professional tennis between 2013 and 2018. “It’s a huge relief and I am just super happy. Today was a great match, the guys played very well [and] just a few points decided it.”

Dodig, who reached the 2013 Wimbledon and 2015 Roland Garros finals with Marcelo Melo, added, “Today, we found the small things. We didn’t give them so many easy points and that was the key of the match.”

The Croatian-Slovakian team will next challenge fifth seeds and defending champions Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury or sixth seeds Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares, the 2016 titlists. Murray and Soares, who are eight matches unbeaten after reuniting in 2021, picked up the Great Ocean Road Open crown (d. Cabal/Farah) prior to the major championship.

Dodig and Polasek, who are now 10-2 on the 2021 season, have a 2-3 record as a team in ATP Tour finals.


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