PARIS — Canadian Daniel Nestor has added another championship to a resume that no active tennis player can match, winning the 69th doubles title of his decorated career at the French Open on Saturday.
Nestor and Serbian partner Nenad Zimonjic beat defending champions Lukas Dlouhy of the Czech Republic and Leander Paes of India 7-5, 6-2 to win their third Grand Slam title as a team.
“I’ve had my best results at this Slam,” Nestor said. “It’s a little bit strange being from Canada, but I’ll take it.”
Nestor and Zimonjic converted three of four break-point chances and never lost serve. The Canadian — who has won at all four Grand Slams, as well as at the Summer Olympics — served it out on his team’s third match point.
The title comes three years after Nestor and former partner Mark Knowles won the clay trophy in Paris over Dlouhy and Pavel Vizner. Nestor, the 37-year-old Torontonian, was playing in his third final in four years at Roland Garros.
Nestor and Zimonjic will become the No.1-ranked team in the world Monday, and will set out to win their third straight Wimbledon crown later this month in London.
The team finished runners-up at 2008 Roland Garros against Pablo Cuevas and Luis Horna and also lost the Australian Open final in January to Americans Bob and Mike Bryan.
“I’d like to first of all congratulate Leander and Lukas,” Nestor said. “These guys have an unbelievable Grand Slam record. They win pretty much one out of every two they play, so we got them today, but I’m sure they’re going to come back strong at Wimbledon.”
Nestor and Zimonjic improved to 6-1 over Dlouhy and Paes, who won two Grand Slams last year, including the French Open.
In the first set, the second-seeded Nestor and Zimonjic broke Dlouhy for a 6-5 lead, with the Canadian serving out the 40-minute set. The second began with a break of Dlouhy with the Czech again losing serve for a 4-1 lead to Nestor’s team.
Nestor and Zimonjic were playing in their fifth Grand Slam final together, and celebrated the win with their families on the court after the match.
“We hit a couple of good shots then we started rolling after that,” Nestor said. “We kind of took over the match.”
Nestor called the pair’s last two clay seasons “unbelievable.”
“Last year we won everything except this,” he said. “And this year, we won the big one, which is even better.”
Nestor and Zimonjic will now shift their focus toward Wimbledon. The two men won the famed grass court tournament in their very first year as teammates, two years ago.
“We’ve averaged one Slam a year so far since we started playing together,” Nestor said. “That’s pretty good for sure. We can’t complain about that.”