The season of good tidings is finally beginning to dawn in the world for Indian tennis as the duo of Rohan Bopanna and Welsey Koolhof pulled off a stunning comeback to lift the Qatar Open title. Fighting their way back from a set down, Bopanna and Koolhof displayed quality tennis en route to scripting victory in 3-6, 6-2, 10-6 and bagging the first doubles title of the season.
The third-seeded pair has taken down quite a few big names while making it to the summit clash against the unseeded British-Mexican duo of Luke Bambridge and Santiago Gonzalez in Doha. The quarter-final proved to be exciting with the Indo-Dutch pair taking town the combined forces of Stan Wawrinka and Frances Tiafoe in straight sets before heading into the semi-finals against the second seeds in the tournament. Brushing aside the challenge from Henri Kontinen and Franko Škugor in a rain-delayed match, Bopanna and Koolhof set up a date with Bambridge and Gonzalez in the finals, which they played back to back.
The inspired British-Mexican pair was quick to cause harm and grabbed the first set which caused Bopanna and Koolhof to raise their guards up once the game began for the second. Bopanna, who is the current Indian No. 1 doubles player cashed in on his ample experience and together with the 30-year-old Koolhof bounced back out of nowhere to race to victory and start the season for Indian tennis on a big and positive note. There was no stopping the third-seeded pair after their rhythm was set in the second set. Into the third and deciding set, the Indo-Dutch pair called the shots and raced to a glorious win.
Coming into the tournament at Doha after having nursed a shoulder and knee injury, the 39-year-old marquee player set the mood for the rest of the season for Indian tennis after securing the USD 1,465,260 title victory. With 2020 being the year that will be important with the Tokyo Olympics beckoning, Rohan Bopanna is eyeing to qualify for a third successive appearance at the Summer Olympic games by ensuring his individual ranking is high enough to partner with Divij Sharan, who also has to maintain the same. The World No. 38 tennis veteran will have to pool in more match wins and possible title victories to safe keep his ranking and go higher up the order till the start of the French Open in late May. The title win at Doha is enough indication for the exciting season of tennis ahead and Bopanna will surely act as a key force in it.