In an amazing twist of fate, even after parting ways, both Sania Mirza and Martina Hingis will be in the final of the Western and Southern Open in Cincinnati, USA today, but just not together. The two, whose highly successful partnership was termed ‘Santina’, will be meeting each other across the net this time, in their first tournament since the split.
Mirza, who is playing with Czech veteran Barbora Strycova, reached the final after a 6-2, 7-5 defeat of the seconds seeds and defending champions Hao-Ching Chan and Yung-Jan Chan. Hingis, meanwhile, made it to the summit clash alongside Coco Vandeweghe of the USA. The fourth seeds beat fifth seeds Karolina Pliskova and Julia Georges 6-1, 6-4 in the semi-finals.
For Hingis, who won the women’s doubles silver at the Rio Olympics, this was her first win at Cincinnati this week after receiving a bye in the first round and walkovers in the subsequent two rounds. The long wait to play their first match did not at all affect the Swiss-American pair.
They won four out of their eight break point opportunities and had 76% of their first serves in. As for the seventh seeds Mirza and Strycova, this was their fourth win in a row at this tournament. They too converted four of their eight break points to clinch the win in 1 hour 20 minutes.
There’s more at stake for Mirza and Hingis than just a title. With both of them currently tied for the top spot in the rankings, this showdown will decide who gets to remain No. 1 after this.
It will be interesting to see who wins this battle tonight.
Kerber one win away from No. 1
In singles, Australian Open champion Angelique Kerber convincingly beat third seed Simona Halep 6-3, 6-4 in the semi-finals. In the summit clash, she will face off against 15th seed Karolina Pliskova, who upset fourth seed Garbine Muguruza 6-1, 6-3.
A win will help the German dethrone Serena Williams from the No. 1 spot.