MELBOURNE, Jan 29: In a perfect climax to their stupendous run, Sania Mirza and Martina Hingis were crowned the Australian Open women�s doubles champions after taming the spirited Czech duo of Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka in straight sets, here today.
The top seeds fought past seventh seeds Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka 7-6 (1), 6-3 in the women�s doubles final that lasted one hour and 45 minutes.
It was their third consecutive Grand Slam title, having won the Wimbledon and US Open in the 2015 season.
In an incredible feat, Sania and Martina have now extended their unbeaten run to 36 matches, winning eight titles in a row. They won five straight titles in 2015, starting from the US Open and before the Australian Open today they had won Brisbane and Sydney events.
It was Sania�s second title at the Australian Open, having won the mixed doubles in 2009 with Mahesh Bhupathi.
However, later in the day, Sania fell in the mixed doubles semifinals with Croatian partner Ivan Dodig. The top seeds lost 5-7, 6-7(4) to fifth seeds Elena Vesnina and Bruno Soares.
The women�s doubles final though was not a stroll in the park for the world number one team with the Czechs putting up a great fight in the opening set. The match was littered with breaks with the two teams struggling to hold serve throughout.
Hlavackova was excellent from the baseline and Hradecka was terrific at the net, playing some breathtaking shots and winners. The top seeds though had enough resources in their kitty to blunt the challenge of the Czech girls.
In the opening set, the two pairs could manage to hold serve only twice each as it was full of breaks.
Hradecka ran frantically to her left from the net and smashed one volley past Sania off Martina�s return and then the Swiss served two consecutive double faults to hand the Czechs an early break.
The top seeds had three break chances in the next game � the fourth � on Hlavackova�s serve but the Czech team saved all.
Martina earned a fourth at deuce with a volley and converted that with a forehand passing winner.
A double fault by Sania at 30-40 gave the break back to the Czech players, who were now leading 3-2.
Hradecka sent a forehand long to give the top seeds a breakpoint and netted a backhand to make it 3-3.
Hlavackova�s unreachable backhand lob gave the Czechs a breakpoint and the Swiss sent a forehand wide.
Hlavackova�s long forehand at 30-40 meant that Sania and Martina had a break chance but Martina�s return just landed wide and it was deuce.
The top seeds though made it 4-4 with Hlavackova�s consecutive forehand errors from the baseline.
Sania went down 0-40 in the next game but saved all three break chances. A forehand to net by Sania at deuce point and the top seeds were facing another break chance but managed to saved that.
Another break chance and this time the Czechs converted to lead 5-4. The seventh seeds came out to serve out the set but were broken.
Martina finally held her serve in the 11th game and the top seeds led 6-5, this time not allowing the Czechs to convert break opportunities. � PTI