Joe Salisbury sunk his British rival Jamie Murray to claim the US Open men’s doubles title in New York alongside partner Rajeev Ram.
Salisbury and Ram recovered from a sluggish opening set to beat Murray and Bruno Soares 3-6 6-2 6-2 and add to the Australian Open crown they won in 2020.
It was the first time two British men had faced each other in a grand slam men’s doubles final in the Open era.
#USOpen glory 🏆🏆
🇺🇸 Rajeev Ram & 🇬🇧 Joe Salisbury claim the 2021 men's doubles title, defeating Murray & Soares 3-6, 6-2, 6-2! pic.twitter.com/2n0UFzpjUY
— US Open Tennis (@usopen) September 10, 2021
Salisbury said: “It’s my first time playing on Arthur Ashe, and to have won this with Rajeev is amazing. It’s a dream come true. I’ve got to say thank you to Rajeev, I couldn’t ask to be alongside anyone better on court.
“I think before we played, everyone was just feeling great that there were two Brits in the final. Obviously there was going to be a British winner whatever happened.
“If we hadn’t won that, it would have been them, and I would have been happy it was two great guys. But to be honest I didn’t feel much different about the fact it was him (Murray) across the net.”
Salisbury and Ram had looked distinctly out of sorts in the opening set in which Murray and Soares – the defending champion after winning last year’s title with Mate Pavic – seized the advantage.
Soares in particular was showing few ill effects from his recent appendectomy after falling ill on his flight to last month’s Tokyo Olympics.
But Salisbury and Ram proved a different proposition from the start of the second set, in which they broke Murray straight away to wrest the initiative, then double-broke to take control.
Murray, bidding for a third grand slam men’s doubles title after two wins in 2016, cut a frustrated figure when he was broken in the opening game of the deciding set, handing his opponents an initiative they never surrendered.
Murray said in his on-court interview: “Obviously we lost our momentum at the start of the second set and the match changed a lot.
“But we’re really proud of the way we competed this week and the way we fought our way through to the final, and we’re looking forward to the future.”
✅ Mixed doubles finalist✅ Men's doubles champion
— LTA (@the_LTA) September 10, 2021
Salisbury could yet leave New York with two titles after he and American Desirae Krawczyk reached the final of the mixed doubles with a 7-6 (2) 6-4 victory over US pair Austin Krajicek and Jessica Pegula.
Salisbury and Krawczyk won their maiden slam title together at the French Open this summer before Krawczyk, partnering Britain’s Neal Skupski, defeated Salisbury and Harriet Dart in the Wimbledon final.
The second seeds will take on Mexico’s Giuliana Olmos and Marcelo Arevalo in the final on Saturday.