Unheralded Australian tennis player John Peers is playing a vital support role in potentially a Wimbledon title double not achieved in more than a century.
Peers has made the men’s doubles final with Jamie Murray, the older brother of singles superstar Andy, after beating Jonathan Erlich and Philipp Petzschner 4-6 6-3 6-4 6-2 in the semi-finals.
Peers and Murray will play Dutchman Jean-Julien Roger and Romanian Horia Tecau in Saturday’s decider.
If Andy, the 2013 champion, can reverse his 2012 finals loss to the great Roger Federer on Friday, the Scottish siblings will become the first brothers since 1906 to feature in the men’s singles and doubles title matches at the All England Club.
Peers’ partner says he fancies their chances much more than Andy’s.
“Well, I mean, he’s got to beat Federer and maybe (Novak) Djokovic. We have to beat Rojer and Tecau. I’d probably rather be us than him, I think,” Murray said.
“He’s going to have to play a lot of great tennis over the next few days if he wants to lift the trophy again.”
Peers and Murray, seeded 13th at Wimbledon, have won five tournaments since teaming two years agao, including the Brisbane International in January.
But never before have they reached a grand slam final together.
Murray won the mixed doubles at the All England Club in 2007 with Serbian Jelena Jankovic, a former women’s world No.1.
For Murray, who has lived in his brother’s shadow for a decade, it’s a chance to prove a star in his own right rather than be known as the brother of a tennis ace now forever titled a Wimbledon champion.
“I spent most of my life that way,” Jamie Murray said.
“You know, people come and talk to me because they want to talk about Andy, which is fair enough. That’s how it goes. I accept that.
“(But) we’re doing a lot of great things ourselves.
“Things have been good for us the last two or three years since we started playing together.
“I think all the hard work we’ve put in is kind of paying off. We get to play on Centre Court again in the Wimbledon final.”