Melbourne, Jan 29 (PTI) The Australian Open trophycontinued to elude Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupathi as there-united ''Indian Express'' could not stop Mike and Bob Bryanfrom scoring a hat-trick of titles at the Melbourne Park heretoday.
The third seeded Indian pair, which united after nineyears with an aim to complete their career Slam, lost 3-6 4-6to the top seeded American twins in the summit clash of themen''s doubles event which lasted a little over one hour.The Bryan brothers won their fifth Australian Open trophybut it slipped out of the hands of Paes and Bhupathi for thesecond time, having lost the title clash back in 1999.
They reached the final here with different partners afterseparating but neither of the two players could complete thecareer Slam.
Paes made the final with Czech Republic''s Martin Damm in2006 while Bhupathi ended runners-up with Bahamas'' MarkKnowles in 2009.
However, it is a fabulous start for the Indian pair inthe 2011 season as they had won the Chennai Open early thismonth.
Paes and Bhupathi last played at a Grand Slam together in2002 when they lost in the second round.
Bhupathi said he would continue playing with Paes in theremaining season.
"There is a reason why Mike and Bob are number one team.
When they have a first serve percentage of 83, it isimpossible to beat them. I thank my partner (Paes), it tookthe best team in the planet to stop this train. Lookingforward to playing with you a lot more this year," Bhupathisaid.
In today''s final, the Bryan brothers dominated as theyserved well and were miser on the unforced errors'' count buthad the Indians converted the break chances in the very firstgame of the match, it might have been different.
Left-handed Bob served extremely well after being down0-40 to lead 3-2 on serve.
The sixth game, in which the two pairs played a stunning20-shot rally, turned the tide in favour of the defendingchampions as the Americans converted their first of the twobreak chances off Paes'' serve.
It was easy for the Americans from there on as Bob servedout the set after just 29 minutes of play.
The Indian duo did well to save a breakpoint in the fifthgame of the second set but Bhupathi dropped his serve in theninth game to hand the Americans the advantage.Bob served out the set, match and the championshiop inthe next game after saving another breakpoint.