July 7, 2012
LONDON, England – For the third year in a row, former Pepperdine men’s tennis player Robert Lindstedt reached the doubles final at Wimbledon. Lindstedt is currently ranked #10 in the ATP doubles rankings, and was the five seed at the Grand Slam, along with his partner Horia Tecau.
Lindstedt, who was the NCAA runner-up doubles champion and an ITA All-American for the Waves in 1998, won five-straight doubles matches to reach the finals at the All England Club. The native of Sweden, with longtime Romanian partner Tecau, opened the tournament with three-straight three set wins to advance to the quarterfinals.
In the quarterfinals, they met with Daniele Bracciali (ITA) and Julian Knowle (AUT), who had upset top-seeded Max Mirny (BLR) and Daniel Nestor (CAN) in straights sets. Lindstedt and Tecau bested their opponents, 6-4, 6-2, 6-4.
In the semifinals, the duo split the first two frames with Jurgen Melzer (AUT) and Philipp Petzchner (GER) before winning the final two 6-4, 6-3.
The finals pit Lindstedt and Tecau against wildcard entry Jonathan Marray (GBR) and Frederik Nielsen (DEN), who were fresh off their semifinal victory versus perennial powerhouse Bob and Mike Bryan (USA).
The Bryan brothers, who were seeded No. 2 in the tournament, won the NCAA Doubles Championship title after defeating Lindstedt and Kelly Gullett 6-7 (6), 6-2, 6-4 back in 1998.
Lindstedt and Tecau were unable to overcome Marray and Nielsen, as the underdogs won a five-set thriller, 4-6, 6-4, 7-5 (5), 6-7 (5), 6-3.
Lindstedt also competed in the mixed doubles draw alongside fellow Swede Sofia Arvidsson, but fell in the opening round.
Another Pepperdine alumni competing at Wimbledon was Andre Begemann, who played for the Waves from 2006-08. Begemann, who hails from Germany, teamed up with Igor Zelenay of Slovakia but lost in the first round of the men’s doubles draw.
Lindstedt will likely be competing for Sweden at the 2012 Olympics in London in the men’s doubles and possibly the mixed doubles event as well. Sweden has listed its men’s doubles team as Lindstedt and Johan Brunstrom. If he also qualifies for the mixed doubles competition he’ll compete alongside Arvidsson.
Two Pepperdine tennis alumni have medaled in past Olympic games. Simon Aspelin won a silver medal for Sweden in men’s doubles at the 2008 games in Beijing, while American Brad Gilbert took the bronze medal in the men’s singles competition in 1988 in Seoul.