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Sania wins Brisbane International crown but loses No. 1 WTA rank

Brisbane: Indian tennis ace Sania Mirza clinched her first title of the season with American partner Bethanie Mattek-Sands by winning the Brisbane International women’s doubles title here on Saturday.

Sania, who has held the WTA doubles No. 1 ranking for 91 weeks beginning April 13, 2015, will, however, cede the top spot to Mattek-Sands after this win.

The top-seeded Indo-American duo won 6-2, 6-3 against the second-seeded Russian team of Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina in the final here.

“I feel like I’m handing over Miss World No.1 crown,” Sania said in her post-match speech, as quoted by WTA’s official Twitter handle.

Coming into the meet as a defending champion — the Indian won it with Swiss ace Martina Hingis last year and with Mattek-Sands in 2013 — Sania said, “We always have good matches (against Vesnina/Makarova). It’s great to come back as defending champion.”

“Thank you to my partner and best friend. We go a long way, we play once a year, the last time we played, we won in Sydney,” Sania said.

“I think we should play a lot more. Thanks for playing with me. I was No.1 in the world but congratulations to her for becoming No.1 now. If not me, then her, she has had an amazing year,” she added.

–IANS