Oswald/Polasek Turn The Tables To Lift Kitzbühel Trophy
Second seeds deny Gille/Vliegen third title in as many weeks
Just six days after falling to Sander Gille and Joran Vliegen in the J. Safra Sarasin Swiss Open Gstaad final, Philipp Oswald and Filip Polasek defeated the Belgian duo 6-4, 6-4 on Saturday to claim their maiden ATP Tour team title at the Generali Open in Kitzbühel.
The second seeds, playing in just their second tour-level event as a team, were dominant on serve throughout the 69-minute championship match to take the trophy. Oswald and Polasek dropped just four points on serve (40/44) and did not face a break point to end Gille and Vliegen’s 11-match winning streak.
“This is a really special moment in my career,” said Oswald. “I played a junior tournament here in Kitzbuhel 20 years ago and I have always been dreaming about this moment. Today, it finally came true. The crowd was unbelievable and the atmosphere was unbelievable. It is one of the greatest matches I have ever played.”
Oswald now owns 10 tour-level doubles trophies, adding to his most recent title at last month’s Plava Laguna Crotia Open Umag (w/Haase). The 33-year-old is the first Austrian to lift the doubles title in Kitzbühel since Julian Knowle in 2012 (w/Cermak).
”[Gille and Vliegen] played a really clean final last week in Gstaad,” said Oswald. “They were much better than us. We made some adjustments today and also the conditions were a bit quicker today. That suited us more and we executed our game plan quite well.”
This is Polasek’s 12th ATP Tour doubles trophy. The 34-year-old, who took an extended break from the game in 2013, ends a six-year wait for a tour-level crown. Polasek’s last ATP Tour title came at 2013 Casablanca (w/Knowle).
”It is a dream come true. I was fighting hard since my comeback last year in July and I was hoping that I can, at least one more time in my life, hang the trophy over my head and it happened. It couldn’t be any better,” said Polasek.
“I had an issue in 2013 and I had to pretty much retire… For three years, I was coaching. I was a head coach in an academy, coaching kids from 8 to 14 and then it got a bit better and I decided to come back… I wouldn’t have expected [the comeback] to have been as good as it has been. [It is] beyond the limit. With everything that has happened in the past six weeks, it is just more than I can ask for.”
Gille and Vliegen were bidding to claim their third tour-level title in three weeks. The Belgian tandem picked up trophies last month at the Swedish Open and the J. Safra Sarasin Swiss Open Gstaad.
Oswald and Polasek earn 250 ATP Doubles Ranking points and split €29,650 in prize money. Gille and Vliegen receive 150 points and share €15,200.