Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut fought back from a set and a break down at 4-5 to overcome Alexander Bublik and Andrey Golubev and claim their second Roland Garros title on Saturday.
The home favourites, who were backed heavily on Court Philippe-Chatrier, won 4-6, 7-6(1), 6-4 in two hours and 11 minutes as they became the first all-French team to triumph at the clay-court Grand Slam twice. It is their fifth Grand Slam title overall, with the team having won the Australian Open, Wimbledon, and US Open titles once.
After an even start, the Kazakhstanis, who were aiming to become the first male players from their country to win a Grand Slam title in any discipline, won three games in a row from 2-2, breaking the 2018 Roland Garros champions twice to move 5-2 ahead. Although the French tandem did close to 4-5, Bublik and Golubev held serve to clinch the set as they won 80 per cent (16/20) of their first service points.
Despite being broken at the start of the second, the Kazakhstanis continued to return well, claiming 40 per cent (8/20) of points on Herbert and Mahut’s first-serve, as they won four of the next five games to lead 5-4. However, the pair, who were competing in their second Grand Slam together after reaching the third round at the Australian Open in February (l. to Arevalo/Middelkoop), could not close out from deuce while serving. Herbert and Mahut then dominated the tie-break to force the match into a decider.
From there, the experience of the French pair showed, as they saved both break points they faced before taking their opportunity to move 4-3 ahead in the decider. Herbert and Mahut, who dominated around the net during the contest, went on to close out the victory on serve for their 18th title together.