The Rod Laver Arena witnessed a spectacular journey coming to an end as Nick Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis walked away with the Australian Open Grand Slam title for men’s doubles. They defeated compatriots Max Purcell and Matthew Ebden 7-5, 6-4.
Just last week, the winning duo were wildcards, and from having no expectations, Kyrgios and Kokkinakis – dubbed Special Ks – went on to become the first all-Australian partnership to have won since 1997. The last victors were the Woodies, Mark Woodforde and Todd Woodbridge, who achieved this feat at Melbourne Park.
Kyrgios said, “I have won some big titles around the world, played some amazing matches. This one ranks No 1 for me.” He also referred to his childhood friend and match partner, Kokkinakis, saying “When I say I wouldn’t want to do it with anybody else, I mean it. It was just special. The whole week, winning each round, I didn’t take it for granted. I was soaking it in. Not one time did it cross my mind that we were going to win the title”, as per The Guardian.
The match saw the duo extremely serious, and nine years after claiming the junior Wimbledon doubles title, they have another silverware to their name. This victory has been especially meaningful to Kokkinakis, who’s been plagued by injuries and illnesses for a major part of his career, but went on to win his maiden ATP singles title at Adelaide, earlier in January.
However, the two didn’t give many assurances whether they’d continue this fruitful partnership in the upcoming tournaments. Kyrgios clarified he’s neither playing the French Open nor Wimbledon doubles, which leaves the US Open and ATP Finals. Kokkinakis laughingly added, “There you go. I’ll just try and find someone else. That’s fine. Didn’t even enjoy it, anyway. [Kyrgios] just wants to rock up for the ATP Finals end of the year, I reckon. That’s all right.”