Bob and Mike Bryan, the Tennis Twins

60 Minutes' Lesley Stahl Profiles the Doubles Duo

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Professional tennis is a star-driven game where fans know the best players by one name: Federer, Nadal, Venus and Serena. But that's singles. What about doubles? For the past few years, doubles has also been dominated by players with one name: the Bryans.

Never heard of them? That's because doubles is often relegated to the side courts and hardly ever televised. The Bryan brothers want to change that.

Bob and Mike Bryan share more than the same mission and last name: they share the same DNA. They're identical twins who share pretty much everything.

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You might say twins do that, but even in the strange parallel universe of identicals, the Bryan brothers are in a league of their own.

Bob and Mike celebrate each victory the same way: they jump up towards each other and bump their chests. With 58 professional titles, their chests may be getting sore, but they are just four trophies away from breaking the all-time record for tennis doubles.

Asked if they are the best doubles player in the world, both shrugged in sync, and Mike replied "We like to think we are."

In fact, they do everything in sync. You get mesmerized watching, like when they're about to return a shot in a game, or on the sidelines between games, even while practicing, near their home north of Los Angeles.

"We complement each other really well. I mean, if you put us together, we're one really good..." Mike told "60 Minutes" correspondent Lesley Stahl.

"…complete player. Yeah," Bob finished the sentence.

"When you're playing, do you realize how synchronized you are?" Stahl asked.

"It's freaky," Bob acknowledged. "We're bouncing in unison, in sync. And then we stop at the same time and we both just grab our racquets. It's nuts."

Bob is an inch taller, a little heavier and left handed; Mike's a righty. They're what's called "mirror identicals."

To analyze their game, we spoke to another pair of tennis brothers: John McEnroe, who was the best in the world in both singles and doubles, and his younger brother Patrick, captain of the U.S. Davis Cup team, that the Bryans have played on since 2003.

"The good news for them is that there's a leftie and a righty. And the leftie, Bob, is more of a big server, big hitter. And the righty is sort of better at strategy, better in the returns. And as my big bro knows, having a leftie and righty combination in doubles is pretty much ideal," Pat McEnroe explained.

"Their biggest thing is that they just know what each other's thinking, obviously. There're places on the court where people aren't sure who's going to take the ball, and they seem to do that naturally," John McEnroe added.

"Well, is it mental telepathy? I know a lot of the other players think they actually have that between them," Stahl remarked.

"I think they do, to be honest. It's very eerie sometimes," Pat replied.

Talking to Stahl after a practice session, still in identical clothes and shades Mike comments: "Yeah, it looks like we can read each other's minds."

Asked if he can, Bob said, "Sometimes."

"I know what you're thinkin'," Mike jokes.

But, seriously, what do they think is the main advantage to being twins?

"We're never gonna give up on each other. You know, other teams are worried if they play a bad match, 'Is the guy going to leave me and leave me out on the street?'" Bob explained. "And we're never going to do that."

And they never do: they never leave each other either on the court or off.

"When people look at us they say, 'Yeah, you know, they're a little off.' You know, how tight we are. You know, we're living in the same house. We're sharin' everything," Bob explained.