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Australian Open: India’s Sania Mirza and Swiss Martina Hingis win women’s doubles trophy

Sat January 30 2016, 12:34 am
  • Sania Mirza, Martina Hingis, Australian Open, women doubles, Australian Open India, India australian open, Sania Mirza Martina Hingis, sania mirza martina hingis doubles, sania mirza martina hingis match, sania mirza martina hingis trophy

    In a perfect climax to their stupendous run, Sania Mirza and Martina Hingis were today crowned the Australian Open women's doubles champions after they tamed the spirited Czech duo of Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka in straight sets for their 36th win in a row, here. The top seeds fought past the seventh seeds Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka 7-6 (1) 6-3 in the women's doubles final that lasted one hour and 45 minutes. [Caption: Sania Mirza of India plays a return as her partner Martina Hingis of Switzerland watches during their match against Czech Republic's Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka in the women's doubles final at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Friday, Jan. 29, 2016. (AP)]

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    It was their third consecutive Grand Slam title for Sania and Martina, having won the Wimbledon and US Open in the 2015 season. In an incredible feat, Sania and Martina have now extended their unbeaten run to 36 matches, winning eight titles in a row. They won five straight titles in 2015, starting from the US Open and before the Australian Open now. It was Sania's second title at the Australian Open, having won the mixed doubles in 2009 with Mahesh Bhupathi.[Caption: Czech Republic's Andrea Hlavackova, front, and Lucie Hradecka watch a return shot to Martina Hingis of Switzerland and Sania Mirza of India during the women's doubles final at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Friday, Jan. 29, 2016. (AP) ]

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    The final though was not a stroll in the park for the world number one team with the Czechs putting up a great fight in the opening set. The match was littered with breaks with the two teams struggling to hold serve throughout. Hlavackova was excellent from the baseline and Hradecka was terrific at the net, playing some breathtaking shots and winners. The top seeds though had enough resources in their kitty to blunt the challenge of the Czech girls. [Caption: Switzerland's Martina Hingis (L) and India's Sania Mirza celebrate after winning their doubles final match at the Australian Open tennis tournament at Melbourne Park, Australia, January 29, 2016. (Reuters)]

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    "I would like to thank everyone for coming out and supporting us. For me Australian Open is special, it's like home. I have special memories here. We had an incredible one year. Martina is an amazing champion and an amazing person, so it is a privilege for me to play with her," Sania said. "We know how good you are (Czech team). We lost to you at Roland Garros. Hopefully we will have more finals to fight for," Sania said. [Caption: Switzerland's Martina Hingis (L) and India's Sania Mirza celebrate after winning their doubles final match at the Australian Open tennis tournament at Melbourne Park, Australia, January 29, 2016. (Reuters)]

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    Martina was equally effusive in her praise for the Czechs. "They pushed us to the limit. It was s tough tournament. We will try to defend our title next year." In the opening set, the two pairs could manage to hold serve only twice each as it was full of breaks. Hradecka ran frantically to her left from the net and smashed one volley past Sania off Martina's return and then the Swiss served two consecutive double faults to hand the Czechs an early break. [Caption: Switzerland's Martina Hingis (L-R), India's Sania Mirza and Czech Republic's Lucie Hradecka and Andrea Hlavackova pose for pictures after Hingis and Mirza won their doubles final match at the Australian Open tennis tournament at Melbourne Park, Australia, January 29, 2016. (Reuters)]

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    The top seeds had three break chances in the next game -- the fourth -- on Hlavackova's serve but the Czech team saved all. Martina earned a fourth at deuce with a volley and converted that with a forehand passing winner. A double fault by Sania at 30-40 gave the break back to the Czech players, who were now leading 3-2. Hradecka sent a forehand long to give the top seeds a breakpoint and netted a backhand to make it 3-3. [Caption: Martina Hingis, center right, of Switzerland and Sania Mirza, center left, of India hold their trophy aloft after defeating Czech Republic's Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka in the women's doubles final at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Friday, Jan. 29, 2016. (AP)]

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    There was no end to breaks with Martina dropping her serve next. Hlavackova's unreachable backhand lob gave the Czechs a breakpoint and the Swiss sent a forehand wide. Hlavackova's long forehand at 30-40 meant that Sania and Martina had a break chance but Martina's return just landed wide and it was deuce. The top seeds though made it 4-4 with Hlavackova's consecutive forehand errors from the baseline. [Caption: Martina Hingis, center left, of Switzerland and Sania Mirza, center right, of India pose for a photo with the ball kids after defeating Czech Republic’s Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka in the women's doubles final at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Friday, Jan. 29, 2016. (AP)]

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    Sania went down 0-40 in the next game but saved all three break chances. A forehand to net by Sania at deuce point and the top seeds were facing another break chance but managed to saved that. Another break chance and this time the Czechs converted to lead 5-4. The seventh seeds came out to serve out the set but were broken. Martina finally held her serve in the 11th game and the top seeds led 6-5, this time not allowing the Czechs to convert break opportunities. [Caption: Martina Hingis, right, of Switzerland and Sania Mirza of India celebrate after defeating Czech Republic’s Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka during the women's doubles final at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Friday, Jan. 29, 2016. (AP)]

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    Eventually the Czecks too held and it boiled down to a tiebreak in which the top seeds trampled their opponents, losing just one point, to pocket the opening set. They broke Hradecka in the very first game of the second set and never looked back after that. Though Martina was broken in the sixth game but the favourites broke back for a 5-2 lead. [Martina Hingis, left, of Switzerland and Sania Mirza of India hold their trophy aloft after defeating Czech Republic's Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka in the women's doubles final at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Friday, Jan. 29, 2016. (AP)]

  • Sania Mirza, Martina Hingis, Australian Open, women doubles, Australian Open India, India australian open, Sania Mirza Martina Hingis, sania mirza martina hingis doubles, sania mirza martina hingis match, sania mirza martina hingis trophy

    There was more drama as Martina was broken in the eight while serving for the match and they squandered three match points in the ninth game on Hradecka's serve. Sania and Martina finally closed the championship in their favour on the fourth chance. [Martina Hingis, left, of Switzerland and Sania Mirza of India kiss their trophy after defeating Czech Republic’s Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka in the women's doubles final at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Friday, Jan. 29, 2016. (AP)]

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