Sania Mirza In Rome Semis, Leander Paes Ousted

Top seeds Sania Mirza and Martina Hingis cruised into the semi-finals of the Internazionali BNL d’Italia with a 6-4, 6-3 victory over Julia Georges and Silvia-Soler Espinosa at the Foro Italico in Rome on Thursday.

But it was curtains for Indians in men’s doubles second round. In a late match, sixth seeds Leander Paes and Daniel Nestor were ousted by the unseeded duo of Pablo Cuevas and David Marrero 2-6, 4-6.

Earlier in the day, Madrid Masters champions Rohan Bopanna and Florin Mergea lost a nail-biter to third seeds Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau 2-6, 7-5, 8-10.

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Sania Mirza (left) and Martina Hingis: In the hunt

Sania Mirza was the only Indian winning on Thursday

In the women’s doubles quarter-final match, the pairs had an early exchange of breaks in the first set. The Indo-Swiss duo broke their German-Spanish opponents once more in the ninth game and eventually clinched the first game 6-4.

The second game started in a similar fashion with the unseeded team of Georges and Soler-Espinosa breaking the top seeds first. But they failed to consolidate the break under relentless pressure from the Swiss-Indian duo. Martina Hingis and Sania Mirza stormed back to win the next four games and ultimately sealed the match with a 6-4, 6-3 triumph in 72 minutes.

Leander Paes denied 700th doubles win

Leander Paes who is seeking his 700th doubles match victory, was once again denied the milestone win. The Uruguayan/Spanish combine of Cuevas and Marrero broke Paes and Nestor thrice to complete the 6-2, 6-4 upset in 55 minutes.

Up next:

Sania Mirza/Martina Hingis will look to reach their fourth final together when they face the winner of the match between Garcia/Srebotnik and Dabrowski/Rosolska on Saturday.

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