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Sania Mirza storms into semis of Hobart International

Hobart, Jan 16 (IANS) Indian tennis star Sania Mirza, alongwith her Ukrainian partner Nadia Kichenok, on Thursday made it to the semi-finals of the women’s doubles event at the Hobart International tournament.

The No.5 seeds — Mirza and Kichenok — entered the last four after taking down all-American duo Vania King and Christina McHale, 6-2, 4-6, (10-4).

It’s a second consecutive victory for the returning Indian tennis star, who is competing in her first tournament since 2017 after taking time off to have her son.

Izhaan, her son, was in the stands for Mirza and Kichenok’s first match too, a battle against Oksana Kalashnikova and Miyu Kato, 2-6, 7-6(3), (10-3), to start with a win.

It was a tough fight for Mirza and Kichenok in the quarter-finals against the unseeded King and McHale. The No.5 seeds started out in control, breaking early to claim a 3-0 lead, and holding off four break points to stay in control before breaking again to win the set 6-2.

However, the Americans were right back in the hunt in the second, saving three break points before claiming the decisive break at 4-3 to send them into a match tiebreak.

With the scores tied at 4-4, Mirza and Kichenok pulled away, reeling off the next six points in a row to book their place in the Hobart semifinals after an hour and 24-minute battle.

Mirza and Kichenok will next take on Marie Bouzkova and Tamara Zidansek, who fought past Kateryna Bondarenko and Sharon Fichman, 6-3, 3-6, (10-4).

–IANS

aak/in

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