Marach/Pavic Presented 2018 ATP World Tour No. 1 Doubles Team Trophy
Oliver Marach and Mate Pavic were honoured during an on-court ceremony Monday at the Nitto ATP Finals, receiving their ATP World Tour No. 1 Doubles Team trophy from ATP Executive Chairman & President Chris Kermode.
“It's tough to find words for this, but [we’re] really honoured to receive this award today,” said Marach. “We worked very hard from last year, and I think all the hard work paid off. What we’ve achieved this year is unbelievable. We had an unreal start of the year and we continued very solid throughout the year, and now receiving this ATP World Tour No. 1 is very special for us.”
The Austrian-Croatian duo clinched the year-end top spot for the first time, becoming the first players from their respective countries to achieve the feat in any of the ATP Rankings (singles, doubles, team). Marach, 38, is the oldest member of a year-end No. 1 doubles team since 38-year-old Sherwood Stewart in 1984. The 25-year-old Pavic is the youngest member of a year-end No. 1 doubles team since Todd Woodbridge, 24, in 1995.
"We did not expect that," said Pavic of finishing year-end No. 1. “Our goal this year was to qualify for the [Nitto ATP Finals] because last year we were first alternates… It was incredible, the start to the year. It gave us a lot of confidence and later on we were good. We were consistent throughout the year."
Marach and Pavic, who first joined forces in March 2017, have captured four doubles titles from nine finals in their first full season together. They won 17 straight matches to start the year, lifting three consecutive trophies at the Qatar ExxonMobil Open in Doha, the ASB Classic in Auckland and the Australian Open. Their winning streak came to an end on 18 February with a runner-up finish at the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament in Rotterdam, one of three ATP World Tour 500-level final appearances this season.
The players captured their fourth team crown of 2018 at the Banque Eric Sturdza Geneva Open in May. In addition to their runner-up finish in Rotterdam, Marach and Pavic contested their third Grand Slam final at Roland Garros in June, the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters, plus the German Tennis Championships 2018 presented by Kampmann and the China Open in Beijing.
Chris Kermode, the ATP Executive Chairman & President, said, "To finish the season as the year-end No. 1 team is the ultimate accolade, a reflection of excellence and consistency throughout a gruelling doubles season that covers 67 tournaments across 31 countries. From January to November, it’s the prize that all teams are chasing, and Oliver and Mate should be hugely proud of their achievements. On behalf of the ATP, many congratulations on a remarkable season."