The British-Pakistani pairing of Dominic Inglot and Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi captured the New York Open doubles title on Sunday afternoon, downing the American duo of Reilly Opelka and Steve Johnson 7-6(5), 7-6(6) inside NYCB LIVE, home of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
“I think it was, in the end, it was the experience and self-belief,” Qureshi said of the team’s success this week. “I think we’ve been working very hard—last year as well. And me and Dom both sat down and had a very serious conversation about what our goals are this year, and where we both of us as a team.”
The week prior, the two came up short in the finals in Montpellier, France, but entered the New York Open feeling confident about their game. After winning the opening set in a tiebreak on Sunday, the pairing went ahead a break in the second set, and had a chance to serve for the match on Qureshi’s racket at 5-4.
But Johnson and Opelka had one last fight in them, breaking serve and forcing the set into another tiebreak. A volley winner from Johnson would save one match point at 5-6, but Inglot and Qureshi would win the next two points to close out the match and win their first title together.
“I believe in his game and he believes in mine. I think I bring a lot of energy on the court, where he brings a lot of power,” Qureshi said of why the duo has found success together. “For me, obviously I’ve been on the tour a little bit longer than him, so a little bit of experience there as well from me. He’s younger than me. I needed somebody to be a little bit younger. He has more fire is more driven also to do well in the slams and the big tournaments. He’s hungry to win more titles, which pushed me also to work harder, to be in the gym more, and look after my diet and everything like that because he’s hungry as a young guy and as well as who wants to do well in his career.
We didn’t have the best start in January, but it’s just about believing in the process and each other. I’m very happy. The last two weeks have been really great, and we’ve been clicking so far.”