Image Credit: Indian Tennis Daily (ITD)/ Twitter

Sania Mirza and Anna Danilina sail into the second round of the Australis Open woman’s double, while Rohan Bopanna, Ramkumar, Yuki Bhambri, and Saketh Myneni took an early exit from the event, showing poor performance in their first round of the Men’s doubles.

Sania Mirza, the tennis sensation from India, and her Kazakh partner Anna Danilina handily dispatched Hungary’s Dalma Galfi and America’s Bernarda Pera to advance to the second round of the Australian Open women’s double.

In the second round, Sania Mirza and Anna Danilina will compete against Anhelina Kalinina of Ukraine and Alison Van Uytvanck of Belgium. Sania’s latest victory is particularly memorable in the eyes of her supporters for a number of reasons. Sania Mirza, a six-time Grand Slam champion, recently declared that the Australian Open 2023 would be her final major competition before retiring.

The six-time Grand Slam winner, who is competing in her final Grand Slam, will retire from tennis following the WTA 1000 Dubai Tennis Championship, which starts on February 19, 2023. Sania Mirza will also play alongside Rohan Bopanna in the mixed doubles competition in Australia. Sania Mirza previously won the Australian Open women’s doubles championship with Martina Hingis in 2016 and the mixed doubles championship with Mahesh Bhupathi in 2009.

India’s disappointing performance in Men’s Doubles

While Mirza advanced and had reason to rejoice, India suffered defeat in Man’s doubles. In a two-and-a-half-hour encounter, Andreas Mies and John Peers, an Australian-German combo, upset the wildcard Indian pair Bhambri and Myneni 6-7, 7-6, 6-3.

The Bhambri-Myneni pair, who just won a title in Bangkok, missed numerous opportunities in a chaotic match. Bhambri was broken as he served the first set and wasted two set-point chances, one of which had a double fault. In the second set, Mies and Peers were guilty of missing a straightforward putaway on the second opportunity to earn a match point, leading to their eventual break.

Myneni delivered two precise body serves in the tiebreak to give the Indians a 6- 3 lead. Bhambri smashed a winner on the second set point to surprisingly force a decider. Bhambri and Myneni were the first players off the block in the third set. They scored early on and kept the momentum going till the final score was 3-1. In the sixth game, Bhambri made a mistake at 30-40 when he anticipated a ball to go long but it instead comfortably landed.

The pumped-up Mies then performed fantastic doubles tennis to stage a comeback, including reflex volleys, cross-court winners, and down-the-line winners while chatting in German with someone in the crowd. Peers quickly ended the match, and India’s 2023 Australian Open campaign — which will have no singles representatives for the first time since 2017 at a major — got off to a bad start.

Ramkumar and his Mexican partner Miguel Angel Reyes-Varela lost against the Greek brothers Stefanos and Petros Tsitsipas 6-3 5-7 3-6 after blowing their first set lead. Furthermore, a straight-sets loss in the opening round of men’s doubles also sent Indian Rohan Bopanna and his Australian partner Matthew Ebden packing from the Australian Open on Friday.

The Austrian duo of Alexander Erler and Lucas Miedler defeated the 10th-seeded Indo-Australian pair 3-6, 5-7. 18 unforced errors were recorded by Bopanna and Ebden, who also frequently had trouble holding serves.