Indian tennis star Sania Mirza started off her campaign in style before her home crowd, defeating lowly-ranked Chinese rival Shuai Zhang in straight sets to give India a 1-0 lead in the Asia Hopman Cup mixed team tennis championship here today.
The Hyderabadi crushed Zhang 6-2, 6-2 in the opening women's singles match in little over an hour to stamp her class at the SAAP Tennis Complex.
The Indian, ranked 66th, broke Zhang's service twice in both the sets en route to the win.
Having won the WTA doubles title in the company of Frenchwoman Mary Pierce in 2003 and WTA singles title in the same event in 2005, the local girl was determined to etch out a convincing win over the 205-ranked Chinese player.
In the men's singles Rohan Bopanna is slated to take on 997-ranked Chinese player Mao-Xin Gong.