New York:Double whammy eluded Indian ace Leander Paes as he failed to add to his mixed doubles title, going down fighting along with his Czech partner Lukas Dlouhy against Bob and Mike Byran of United States in a thrilling US Open doubles final on Friday.
Seventh seeded Paes and Dlouhy lost 6-7(5-7), 6-7(10-12) in one hour and 29 minutes which put paid to the Indian's hopes of second title in the season's last Grand Slam after winning the mixed doubles title on Thursday, partnering Cara Black of Zimbabwe.
Paes and Dlouhy had to be content with $120,000 while their opponents were richer by $420,000 for their effort at the Arthur Ashe Stadium.
The 35-year-old Indian, who had notched up his eighth Grand Slam title yesterday, was as usual lightning fast in front of the net and came up with some stunning winners but failed to match the consistency of the Byran brothers.
The Americans were the better side in the first set winning their serves easier than their opponents and at the same time having better returns.
However, it was Paes and Dlouhy who took the early initiative by breaking serve of their second seeded opponents in the third game with the Indian ace producing a forehand winner to go 2-1 up.
The Indo-Czech pair then saved two break points in their serve to race ahead 3-1 with Dlouhy winning two points in the deuce.
But the Byrans broke back in the sixth game with Dlouhy committing a double fault to level 3-3 and then going 4-3 up before Paes saved a break point to hold serve and level 4-4.
Paes produced some lightning fast movements in front of net to come up with a couple of winners at the crucial moments to level the score 5-5 and then 6-6.
The tie-break went on serves till Paes conceded 3-4 lead to the Americans who seized the opportunity to go 6-3 ahead.
Facing three set points, Dlouhy won two serves to make it 5-6 but failed to stop the brothers to run away with the first set 7-6 in 49 gruelling minutes.
The second set saw the Indo-Czech pair coming back strongly after conceding a service break but they squandered four set points in the tie-break to lose the match in one hour and 29 minutes.
The Indo-Czech pair saved one break point to hold serve in the first game but Bob Byran came up with two winners including a fantastic running forehand to make it 1-1 in quick time.
Dlouhy then double faulted to give away a service break to the Byrans though the Indo-Czech duo made a stunning fightback to break even 2-2 in the next game with Paes sending down a thundering backhand volley and his partner making amends by producing a backhand return winner on Bob's serve.
The next six games went on serve but Paes and Dlouhy had to save three break points on the former's serve in the fifth game and almost broke the Byrans in the eighth game but losing out after a long drawn deuce.
Two desperate attempts by the Indo-Czech pair to take the second set with the Byrans serving at 4-5 and 5-6 failed and another tie-break followed.
Dlouhy committed a blunder at crucial moment double faulting his serve, his sixth in the match, in the Fourth serve of the tie-break to trail 1-3.
The Byrans were in an advantageous position at 4-2 ahead at the change of ends in the tie-break but Paes came up with a great forehand return in the seventh to make it 4-3 and produced two good serves, including an ace, to make it 5-4.
But the Byrans were not to be outdone and they fought back only to squander a match point while serving at 6-5.
Paes and Dlouhy then got four set points in the marathon tie-break but failed to finish before finally capitulating to the relentless consistent effort of the Byran brothers.