Sania-Bhupathi crash out of Australian Open

Melbourne, Jan 27 (IANS) India’s Sania Mirza and Mahesh Bhupathi lost their semi-finals match of the mixed doubles event in straight sets at the Australian Open here Friday.

The No.4 seeds lost to American Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Romanian Horia Tecau 6-3, 6-3. Sania and Bhupathi, who won the title here in 2009, failed to capitalise upon five break points on offer and converted only one.
The Indian pair were poor on service returns as well and managed to hit only 17 winners to their opponents’ 24.
Thirty-seven-year-old Leander Paes is now the sole Indian left in the competition. Paes, who has teamed up with Elena Vesnina of Russia, will play Italians Roberta Vinci and Daniele Bracciali for a place in the mixed doubles final.
Paes also has a chance to win his first men’s doubles title here when he and his Czech partner Radek Stepanek take on Americans Mike and Bob Bryan in the finals.
Meanwhile, in the women doubles, the Russian pairing of Svetlana Kuznetsova and Vera Zvonareva won their first title as a pair when they came back from a set down to take out Italians Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci 5-7, 6-4, 6-3.
The Russian duo, who have 18 Grand Slam finals between the two of them in singles, doubles and mixed doubles events over the years, became the first unseeded team to win at Melbourne Park since the Bondarenko sisters did so in 2008.