Martina Hingis and Sania Mirza are into the record books. The top ranked tandem at this week's Apia International Sydney won their 29th consecutive match as they defeated Raluca Olaru and Yaroslava Shvedova. That win breaks the previous record of 28 consecutive wins.
Hingis-Mirza Win Streak Breaks Previous Record
The list of superlatives attached to the top ranked team on the WTA Tour grew again on Thursday. Top seeds Martina Hingis and Sania Mirza notched their 29th straight win as they came from behind to beat Raluca Olaru and Yaroslava Shvedova 4-6, 6-3, 10-8. The win breaks a tie for the longest win streak in WTA history with Gigi Fernandez and Natasha Zvereva, who had 28 straight wins in 1994. For a while, it looked like Hingis-Mirza would have to settle for a tie of that record as Olaru-Shvedova came out firing. Olaru-Shvedova won the opening set and scored a break early in the second set to lead the top ranked duo 2-0.
That is when the champions went to work. Hingis-Mirza would win five straight games to turn the set around and ultimately take it 6-3. Their serves settled in much more than in the opening set, when they were broken four times. The super tiebreak was a gut wrencher as momentum swung back and forth. Hingis-Mirza looked to be in control at 6-4 after taking two points off the Olaru-Shvedova serve, but gave those two points right back. At 6-5, they would again take a pair of points from their opposition and finally salt the match away on serve.
While it was not easy, Martina Hingis told reporters in the post-match press conference that this is a great match to play at this stage of the season, "It's good to have a tough test like this, this going into a Grand Slam. We don't always play super tennis but we come out, find a solution and now we're the best doubles pair in the world."
Hingis-Mirza await the winner of Friday's semifinal between the second seeded Chans and French third seeds Caroline Garcia and Kristina Mladenovic.
Top Seeds Advance in Hobart
The top seed Spanish pairing of Anabel Medina Garrigues and Aranxta Parra Santonja are on to the semifinals at the Hobart International. The Spaniards survived against Shuko Aoyama and Makoto Ninomiya 3-6, 7-6 (3), 10-4. Medina Garrigues and Parra Santonja will battle Australians Jarmila Wolfe and Kimberly Birrell in one of the semifinals. Fourth seeds Darija Jurak and Nicole Melichar are out in Hobart. They were upset by Christina McHale and Xinyun Han in the quarterfinals 6-3, 6-4. McHale-Han saved five of six break points, while converting three of seven against the fourth seeds. They will face second seeds Kiki Bertens and Johanna Larsson in the semifinals.
Third Seeds Ousted in Auckland
The Kiwis in New Zealand got a treat on Thursday as one of their own, Michael Venus, helped lead an upset of third seeds Alexander Peya and Philipp Petzschner in ATP action. Venus and partner Mate Pavic looked solid in defeating the third seeds 6-3, 6-4. Venus and Pavic saved the only break point they faced and converted three of six chances against Peya-Petzschner. The loss leaves the ASB Classic with just one seeded team. That is comprised of Americans Eric Butorac and Scott Lipsky. They clinched a spot in the semifinals with a hard fought 6-2, 4-6, 10-5 win over fellow-Americans Nicholas Monroe and Donald Young. The other scheduled quarterfinal was erased after John Isner and Lukas Rosol withdrew. That gave Oliver Marach and Julian Knowle a semifinal slot. They take on Butorac-Lipsky. Venus-Pavic face the New Zealand pairing of Marcus Daniell and Artam Sitak in the other semifinal.
Rain Dampened ATP Sydney Doubles Session
The rain in Sydney on Thursday prevented the men's doubles matches scheduled for the day from being completed. The completed match featured fourth seeds Rohan Bopanna and Florin Mergea against John Peers and Sam Groth. Bopanna-Mergea proved to be too much as they eased past the Aussies 6-2, 6-4. Bopanna-Mergea were stout on serve as they won 82 percent of their first serve points and were not broken in the match. In a match suspended due to the rain, Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares will retake the court Friday with a lead over Matt Reid and Jordan Thompson. Murray-Soares took the opening set 6-4 with the second set knotted at 3-3 when the rain came.
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