Defending champion Sania Mirza and her new partner Barbora Strycova had a brilliant start to their Australian Open campaign as they qualified for the second round with a comprehensive 6-3,6-1 win over the British pair of Jocelyn Rae and Anna Smith in a match that lasted exactly an hour.
The match was a one-sided affair and the Brits were no match for the fourth-seeded Indo-Czech pair who were runners-up at the Apia International in Sydney prior to the Australian Open.
The first set saw both teams being quite precise in their first serve with Mirza-Strycova getting 77% of their first serves right and the British duo getting 74% of their first serve right. The set looked close but Rae and Smith weren’t able to convert the two break points they got and made a few double faults, whereas Mirza-Strycova managed to make a decisive break and take the first set 6-3.
If the first set was a tad interesting, the second set was a cakewalk for the Indo-Czech pair. The service wasn’t as good from both teams and both teams got only 50% of their first serves right.
The British pair once again made a number of double faults, this time four, and Mirza-Strycova raced to victory to reach the second round of the competition.
The Indo-Czech pair will now take on either the Australian-Chinese duo of Samantha Stosur and Zhang Shuai, who have already been shown the door in the singles tournament, or the Australian wildcard pair of Kimberly Birrell and Priscilla Hon.
India’s Rohan Bopanna also progressed to the 2nd round in the men’s doubles. Bopanna and his partner, Pablo Cuevas, defeated Thomaz Bellucci and Maximo Gonzalez 6-4, 7-6.