The Latest: Special Ks: Kyrgios, Kokkinakis win doubles

January 29, 2022 GMT
Nick Kyrgios, right, and Thanasi Kokkinakis of Australia celebrate after defeating compatriots Matthew Ebden and Max Purcell in the men's doubles final at the Australian Open tennis championships in Saturday, Jan. 29, 2022, in Melbourne, Australia. (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)
Nick Kyrgios, right, and Thanasi Kokkinakis of Australia celebrate after defeating compatriots Matthew Ebden and Max Purcell in the men's doubles final at the Australian Open tennis championships in Saturday, Jan. 29, 2022, in Melbourne, Australia. (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)
Nick Kyrgios, right, and Thanasi Kokkinakis of Australia celebrate after defeating compatriots Matthew Ebden and Max Purcell in the men's doubles final at the Australian Open tennis championships in Saturday, Jan. 29, 2022, in Melbourne, Australia. (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)
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Nick Kyrgios, right, and Thanasi Kokkinakis of Australia celebrate after defeating compatriots Matthew Ebden and Max Purcell in the men's doubles final at the Australian Open tennis championships in Saturday, Jan. 29, 2022, in Melbourne, Australia. (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)
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Nick Kyrgios, right, and Thanasi Kokkinakis of Australia celebrate after defeating compatriots Matthew Ebden and Max Purcell in the men's doubles final at the Australian Open tennis championships in Saturday, Jan. 29, 2022, in Melbourne, Australia. (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — The Latest at the Australian Open on Saturday (all times local):

11:50 p.m.

Nick Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis — he so-called Special Ks — have won the Australian Open men’s doubles title with a 7-5, 6-4 win over fellow Australians Matt Ebden and Max Purcell.

The victory was the first by a home pairing at Melbourne Park since Mark Woodforde and Todd Woodbridge — widely known as the Woodies — in 1997.

Kyrgios and Kokkinakis entered the tournament on a wild card and became heavy crowd favorites as they took out seeded teams from the second round to the semifinals.

They received the winners trophy from Woodforde and Woodbridge.

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“I don’t know how we’re doing this, to be perfectly honest,” said Kyrgios, who lost in the second round of the singles draw to U.S. Open champion Daniil Medvedev.

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9:15 p.m.

Ash Barty has won the Australian Open final 6-3, 7-6 (2) over Danielle Collins to end a 44-year drought for Australian women at their home Grand Slam tournament.

Barty won the first set with one service break but was down 5-1 in the second set after dropping serve in the second and sixth games. Collins had two chances to serve for the set but was broken both times.

Barty dominated after taking the set to a tiebreaker, racing to a 4-0 lead.

Barty was the first Australian woman into the singles final of the Australian Open since Wendy Turnbull in 1980 and is now the first Australian champion since Chris O’Neil in 1978.

The 25-year-old Barty now has major titles on three surfaces, adding the hard court at Melbourne Park to her win on grass at Wimbledon last year and on clay at the French Open in 2019.

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8:20 p.m.

Ash Barty has won the first set in the Australian Open final against Danielle Collins and is potentially one more set away from ending a 44-year drought for Australian women at their home Grand Slam.

Top-ranked Barty saved a break point in the fifth game and then broke the American’s serve on the way to taking the set 6-3 in 32 minutes. The No. 27-seeded Collins is playing in her first major final.

Barty won Wimbledon last year and the French Open in 2019. She’s aiming to be the first Australian woman since Chris O’Neil in 1978 to win the Australian singles title.

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6 p.m.

Top-seeded Bruno Kuzuhara of the United States has added the Australian Open junior singles title to his earlier doubles crown in incredible circumstances at Melbourne Park.

Kuzuhara beat fourth-seeded Jakub Mensik 7-6 (4), 6-7 (6), 7-5 in a match that lasted 3 hours, 43 minutes and ended with the Czech player having serious cramping that barely allowed him to continue serving.

A 33-point rally won by Kuzuhara in the last game seemed to spell the end for Mensik, who fell to the court several times with cramps, finished with a pair of double-faults, and had to be taken off Rod Laver Arena in a wheelchair.

The 17-year-old Kuzuhara has Japanese heritage, was born in Brazil and moved to the U.S. with his parents when he was an infant.

In his acceptance speech, he thanked his family and friends in America in England, and also added his thanks in Portuguese and Japanese.

“First of all, it’s an unfortunate way to win it,” he said during the trophy presentation. “It was a great fight. We pushed each other right to the end.”

To Mensik, he added: “Great match. If you’re watching inside, thanks Man.”

The Florida-based Kuzuhara won the junior boys doubles title at the Australian Open with Coleman Wong of Hong Kong — they beat American Alex Michelsen and Adolfo Daniel Vallejo of Paraguay 6–3, 7–6 (3).

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1:30 p.m.

Top-seeded Petra Marcinko is the Australian Open girls champion.

The 16-year-old Croatian player beat eighth-seeded Sofia Costoulas of Belgium 7-5, 6-1 in the first of the junior singles final to kick off play at Rod Laver Arena on Day 13.

Top-seeded Bruno Kuzuhara of the United States was playing fourth-seeded Jakub Mensik of Czech Republic in the boys championship match.

The 17-year-old Kuzuhara has Japanese heritage, was born in Brazil and moved to the U.S. with his parents when he was an infant. The Florida-based Kuzuhara has already won the junior boys doubles title at the Australian Open with Coleman Wong of Hong Kong — they beat American Alex Michelsen and Adolfo Daniel Vallejo of Paraguay 6–3, 7–6 (3).

The junior girls doubles title has also been decided — Clervie Ngounoue of the U.S. and Russian Diana Shnaider beat Canadians Kayla Cross and Victoria Mboko 6–4, 6–3.

Ash Barty and Danielle Collins were scheduled to play in the women’s singles final in a night match.

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11:45 a.m.

With center stage to be taken by Ash Barty and Danielle Collins in the women’s singles final later in the day, the junior boys and girls finals were first up on Rod Laver Arena.

Top-seeded Bruno Kuzuhara of the United States plays fourth-seeded Jakub Mensik of Czech Republic in the boys championship match.

Kuzuhara, 17, is Brazilian-born but moved to the U.S. with his Japanese-heritage parents when he was an infant. The Florida-based Kuzuhara has already won the junior boys doubles title with Coleman Wong of Hong Kong — they beat American Alex Michelsen and Adolfo Daniel Vallejo of Paraguay 6–3, 7–6 (3).

The junior girls doubles title has also been decided — Clervie Ngounoue of the U.S. and Russian Diana Shnaider beat Canadians Kayla Cross and Victoria Mboko 6–4, 6–3.

After the Barty-Collins singles championship match, the men’s doubles final features an all-Australian lineup. The crowd-pleasing and so-called “Special K” team — Thanasi Kokkinakis and Nick Kyrgios, play Matt Ebden and Max Purcell.

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