Cincinnati: Indian tennis ace Sania Mirza has romped into the number one spot in the latest WTA doubles rankings after she teamed up with her new partner, Barbora Strycova of Czech Republic to win the Western and Southern Open.
Mirza and Strycova outclassed her former Slovakian partner Martina Hingis and Coco Vandeweghe 7-5, 6-4 in the summit showdown clash that lasted one hour and 22 minutes in Cincinnati.
The 29-year-old Indian will move alone to the top of the rankings as Sania and Hingis ended their highly successful partnership last month with mutual consent.
Following the match, Mirza admitted that it was not easy for her to compete against Martina while pointing out that that the duo are still good friends.
“I’m not going to lie. It’s a very difficult situation. It’s not easy because, A, because we are still good friends, so it’s never easy. The first we tournament we split and we come and we have to play each other. Of course there is no better match to play than the final, so was difficult, I think for both of us,” Mirza said.
Mirza, however, said that being a professional tennis players, they have to come out and give their absolute best to seal a victory.
“It was going to happen eventually. We had to play against each other at some point. I think it’s better that it happened earlier, as soon as we came out, because next time it’s obviously less difficult to play,” she added.
Earlier, in a joint statement posted on Twitter, the top-ranked women’s doubles pair stated that they had mutually decided to split following their recent defeats against lower-ranked players.
“After three Grand Slam victories and 11 WTA doubles titles together, we have mutually agreed that we would be open to playing with other players for the remainder of the season,” Mirza and Hingis said.
Explaining the rationale behind their decision to part ways, the Indo-Swiss duo said, “Perhaps, because of our great results, we have had very high expectations and unfortunately did not get the results we desired recently. We would like to clarify that it was a totally professional decision based purely on our recent results.”
Although the pair won the Australian Open this year, they were knocked out of the French Open and Wimbledon in the third and quarterfinal rounds respectively.
They had been in sublime form last year and extended their winning streak to 41 this year before losing at the Qatar Open in February. (ANI)