Sania-Tecau lose Australian Open mixed doubles final
New Delhi: India's Sania Mirza and her Romanian partner Horia Tecau stumbled to a 3-6, 2-6 loss in their Australian Open mixed doubles final against Canada's Daniel Nestor and France's Kristina Mladenovic at Melbourne Park on Sunday.
Sania, 27, who won her Australian Open (2009) and French Open (2012) mixed doubles titles playing with fellow Indian Mahesh Bhupathi, had her task cut out against the seasoned Nestor, winner of 83 doubles titles and eight men's doubles Grand Slams and three mixed-doubles crowns.
Interestingly, Sania and Tecau lost in the quarterfinals to Nestor and Mladenovic at Wimbledon last year, where the Canadian-French pairing went on to clinch the crown.
The 2013 Wimbledon was Sania and Tecau's first tournament together. Incidentally, ten years ago, in 2003, they won their first Grand Slam crowns at Wimbledon, the boys and girls titles.
Sania and Tecau entered the Australian Open final with a come-from-behind win against the Australian pair of Jarmila Gajdosova and Matthew Ebden 2-6, 6-3, 10-2 in a contest lasting an hour and 13 minutes on Friday.
In a see-saw battle, Sania and Tecau were outplayed in the opening set, during which they failed to earn even a single break point. Gajdosova and Ebden were markedly better with their first serve to pocket the opener in 28 minutes.
But Sania and Tecau roared back into the match in the second set. The Indo-Romanian pair held serve and converted the only break point they earned.
They were also helped by the nine unforced errors, which their rivals committed, to stay afloat in the match.
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