Croatia’s Nikola Mektic said winning a gold medal was more than a dream come true. Mektic and Mate Pavic, seeded at No. 1, beat fellow Croatians Marin Cilic and Ivan Dodig 6-4 3-6 10-6 to capture their maiden team gold medal.
“This is just a very happy feeling and we’re super thrilled to win the title and just to be at the Olympics,” Mektic said, per the Olympics website. “To have such a great result is just more than a dream come true and I’m so delighted to share this moment with Mate [Pavic].”
Mektic and Pavic claimed the first break of the match in the opening game and then held on to their serve the rest of the way to win the opener. In the second set, Cilic and Dodig responded as they broke Mektic and Pavic in the sixth game and served out for a decider in the ninth game.
Losing the second set didn’t affect Mektic and Pavic as they took a 6-0 lead in the match tie-break before realizing their first match point.
Mektic and Pavic continue their outstanding season
Mektic and Pavic, who recently won Wimbledon, now have won it all nine times this season.
In the bronze medal match, Marcus Daniell and Michael Venus beat USA’s Austin Krajicek and Tennys Sandgren 7-6 (3) 6-2. “New Zealand is so Olympics-focused, it’s really a huge deal in New Zealand, so to show tennis can get medals, I really hope that it jump-starts a passion and interest for tennis in the younger generations,” Daniell said.
On the other side, Krajicek was disappointed after failing to win a medal. “There’s not much you can say about that except it’s pretty, pretty devastating to lose that one,” Krajicek said. “You know, [you] give yourself a chance to get a medal and then to lose those two [matches – including the men’s doubles semifinal] is tough, but you have to give those guys credit today. They played well.”