French Open: Bopanna, Paes, Mirza advance to second round
Leander Paes and Rohan Bopanna along with their respective partners crossed the opening hurdle of the men's doubles event with hard-fought victories, even as Sania Mirza posted an easy win in the women's doubles of the French Open tennis tournament on Wednesday.
India's veteran star Paes along with his Canadian partner Daniel Nestor fought hard before prevailing over Australian combo of James Duckworth and Chris Guccione 6-2 5-7 7-5, while Bopanna and Florin Mergea of Romania came from a set down to post a 5-7 6-3 6-4 victory against the Serbian combination of Filip Krajinovic and Viktor Troicki.
In contrast, top seeded Sania and Martina Hingis had a cake walk against Germany's Julia Goerges and Barbora Krejcikova of Czech Republic, as they advanced to the second round with a comfortable 6-3 6-0 win.
Earlier, having wrapped up the opening set comfortably, the 10th seeded pair of Paes and Nestor lost the second 5-7. But the Indo-Canadian duo used all their experience to prevail over their rivals in the third and deciding set, which also turned out to be another gruelling battle.
During the match, Paes and Nestor saved three of the five breakpoints that came their way. The Indo-Canadian duo will now clash with the winner of another first round match between Eric Butorac/Sam Groth and Andre Begemann/Julian Knowle.
Meanwhile, ninth seeded Bopanna and Mergea also faced a stiff competition from their unseeded opponents from Serbia. After a closely contested opening set, which was won by Krajinovic and Troicki, Bopanna-Mergea came back strongly to clinch the second and third sets rather comfortably.
The Indo-Romanian combination will next face Americans Austin Krajicek and Donald Young in the second round.
Sania and her Swiss partner hardly had to break a sweat as they thoroughly dominanted the match. With impeccable serving, the Indo-Swiss combination won 70% of the first serve points.
However, Mahesh Bhupathi lost his first round match along with Australia's Nick Kyrgios in the men's doubles yesterday, suffering a straight-set defeat at the hands of Lucas Pouille and Thanasi Kokkinakis.