© Astana Open

Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic celebrate winning the title in Astana.

Mektic/Pavic Clinch Astana Crown

Croatians lift fifth trophy of the season

Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic captured their fifth tour-level title of the season on Sunday at the Astana Open, downing Frenchmen Adrian Mannarino and Fabrice Martin 6-4, 6-2.

The second seeds, who dropped just one set en route to the final, were in control throughout the 66-minute clash in Kazakhstan, firing nine aces and saving all three break points they faced to earn their 46th tour-level win of the season.

“We are very happy. We played a great match today,” Mektic said. “After the grass-court season, this is our first title and we are very happy and confident and motivated for the end of the season. It is a very strong tournament and we are very happy and proud we came out on top.”

“They started off pretty good serving and hit a couple of return winners,” Pavic said. “We saved a break point and from that moment on I would say that we were the much better team on the court.”

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Following their title, Mektic and Pavic have boosted their hopes of qualifying for the Nitto ATP Finals, to be held from 13-20 November in Turin. The Croatians reached the semi-finals at the end-of-year event last season and are currently fourth in the Pepperstone ATP Live Doubles Rankings.

The pair has now lifted trophies on all three surfaces this year after triumphing on the hard courts at the ATP 500 event in Astana. In May they won consecutive clay-court titles in Rome and Geneva, before they tasted success on grass at The Queen’s Club and Eastbourne.

The 34-year-old Mannarino was competing in his first tour-level doubles final, while Martin was aiming to lift his eighth trophy at this level but first since 2021 when he triumphed in Antwerp with Nicholas Mahut.