Santina take maiden clay court title in Rome

Rome, May 15 (IANS) The World No.1 pair of Sania Mirza and Martina Hingis added another feather to their cap by defeating Elena Vesnina and Ekaterina Makarova in a hard-fought women’s doubles final at the Rome Masters here on Sunday.

The Indo-Swiss combination fought back a spirited challenge from their Russian opponents to prevail 6-1, 6(5)-7, 10-3 in one hour and 30 minutes.

This was the fifth title of the season for Sania and Martina. They had won at Sydney, Brisbane, Australian Open and St Petersburg earlier in the season. This is also their first clay court title. Winning the Rome Masters boosted their confidence ahead of the French Open which starts next week.

It was also the first title win for Sania and Martina since the end of their incredible 41-match winning streak at the Doha Open in February.

Santina started off strongly by winning the first set in 24 minutes. The setback seemed to perk up the Russians as they picked up their game to clinch the second set in the tie-breaker in 57 minutes and pull level.

However, the top seeds simply blew away their opponents in the decider, winning 10-3 in just 12 minutes to clinch the issue.



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