World number one doubles team Sania Mirza and Martina Hingis did something remarkable on Friday in Melbourne. The Indian/Swiss pair won their third grand slam title in a row with a 7-6 6-3 victory over Czech pair Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka.
No team has come close to the success Mirza and Hingis have created together. The pair will be a mind boggling 7000 ranking points clear at the top of the doubles rankings on Monday. The title makes it 12 grand slam women's doubles titles for Hingis while Mirza has had three which have all come since pairing up with her current partner. The duo will have some title defending to do as they have also won the Wimbledon and US Open Championship's. In the process, they have won 36 consecutive matches in a row. It is clear that not only do the pair have good relations on the court, but off the court friendship has helped them keep the right chemistry.
"Thanks to my partner, we have had an incredible year," Mirza said in a courtside interview.
"We keep going and it´s great to have all these records with you."
Both doubles were very gracious in the trophy ceremony by thanking their partners, recognizing their opponents; and thanking the sponsors/fans.
There has been some criticism from the tennis world on the lack of coverage of the winning pair's run to success. Doubles has often times taken the back burner, but should be recognized as an important part to the sport of tennis as a whole.
"You have won two grand slam doubles so you were very tough," Hingis said of the Czech pair.
"I know everyone will say break, break, break but you guys have the best returns in doubles."
The Czech pair are formidable opponents in their own right. They have taken two grand slam titles as a pair and are one of the few teams that can even challenge the world number one team. The duo had to fight through a slew of three set matches throughout the two week tournament, but showed toughness to continue going. Not enough was left in the tank as they were outclassed in most aspects in the final. Mirza and Hingis played the close points better and showed extreme poise as they clinched the title.
On their way to the title they have only dropped one set and played an unbelievable match in the semi's beating 13th seeds Julia Goerges/Karolina Pliskova 6-1, 6-0 to power through to the final. They have shown that they have the ability to dominate any team on any given day.
Both teams surprising registered no aces on the day. Both teams returned incredibly as it was a match based of the return rather than the serve. Mirza/Hingis won 57% of receiving points and the Czech pair won 52% respectively. The doubles number one's converted on eight of 17 break points while the seven seeds converted on six of 14 break points.
Break Filled First Set Goes To Mirza/Hingis
High quality tennis was played right from the start. Both teams held to start out proceedings, but then things took a twist. The one seeds got broken to 15 off of a double fault. The Czech pair then got broken as well to keep both team level at two apiece. The story of the set became the crazy amount of breaks from both teams. Both team broke four times to get the score to five-all. Then the number one seeds stood firm by finally getting a hold to go up 6-5. The seven seeds remained determined as they held to take the set to a tiebreaker.
The tiebreak was all Mirza/Hingis as the pair took a 4-0 lead before the Czech's even got on the board for 1-4. It will be all Mirza/Hingis from there as they took the remaining three points, capped off with a forehand forced error to win the tiebreak 7-1 and take the set 7-6.
One Seeds Cruise Through
Momentum was clearly in the way of the one seeds as they dominated the first set tiebreak. Hingis took a medical timeout before the second set got under way but seemed to be fine. As Hlavackova started off on serve, their opponents made sure to draw errors as they grabbed the break at 30. The Czech's failed to get a rhythm as play went out. A long fifth game saw the Czech's get edged out and broken to go down 1-4. In the next game, the one seeds got up 40-0 but failed to close out the game as the seven seeds came roaring back to break.
It would prove to be not enough for the Czech's as they got outclassed in the end. After a competitive game, the one forced a forehand error on AD-out to break and took the match after a 6-3 second set finish. The Indian/Swiss pair were ecstatic as they capped off their brilliant run with the title.