First Indian woman to reach WTA finals summit clash
Indian tennis ace Sania Mirza, in partnership with Zimbabwe Cara Black, reached the finals of the WTA tour finals in the doubles category. The third-seeded Indo-Zimbabwean duo bested former no.1s and tournament runners-up Kveta Peschke and Katarina Srebotnik 4-6, 7-5, 11-9 in a thrilling match. The victors had also won their only other encounter earlier this year in Miami.
After the two teams split the first two sets, the match proceeded into the super tiebreaker. Mirza and Black, who were trailing 6-9 at one point of time, after a see-saw battle in the tiebreaker, saved three match points and won the next five points to clinch the thriller. This is the first time that Sania, or any other Indian woman, is entering the season-ending WTA finals. She has furthered her resume by reaching the championship match.
If they manage to win this title, it will be the best laurel that Sania Mirza has earned in her doubles career, something that even her more illustrious male compatriots have failed to do despite recording a dozen final appearances among them. A title win would definitely be an icing on the cake for the duo who have had an impressive season so far and would definitely be the best parting gift to a successful, but a short-lived doubles partnership.
They will face their regular tour nemesis Hsieh Su-Wei and Peng Shuai, the second seeds, in the final match. Interestingly, it will be the last match as a pair for both the teams. Sania and Hsieh will play together for the 2015 season, while the other two have not yet announced their plans. Unlike the third seeds, their opponents have played relatively easier matches en route to the title match.
Mirza and Black, who trail 2-3 in their head to head against the two-time Major Champions, have to cross a difficult hurdle in the form of an equally potent team to lift that precious trophy come Sunday evening. Sania’s punishing forehands and her now crisp volleys, in tandem with Cara’s delectable netplay and the team’s fighting spirit, could definitely play an important role in boosting their chances in the Finals.Published 26 Oct 2014, 12:49 IST