Sania loses to Hingis at Dubai

Sania Mirza has lost in the first round of the Dubai Open.

updated: February 25, 2007 11:38 IST
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Sania Mirza went down fighting against five-time Grand Slam champion Martina Hingis in the $1 million Dubai Duty Free Women's Open tennis tournament. After being outplayed 3-6 in the first set, Sania came back strongly in the second set. She matched the Swiss wild card entry game for game before bowing out 5-7 in the Tier II hardcourt tournament. The 19-year-old, who played forceful shots with swift movements in her bid to keep Hingis at bay and take a lead, lost her serve in the third game. Following this, her opponent rallied to a 3-2 lead. Sania, the doubles title winner at the Bangalore Open last week, levelled the scores in style by breaking Hingis in the sixth game without wasting any chances. After the 25-year-old Hingis captured two successive games, Sania rared back to restore the parity in the 10th game once again by breaking Hingis after missing two break points in the process. Impressive win But the comeback queen Hingis asserted her supremacy by clinching the next game from Sania and sealed the matter with an impressive winner. "It looked like an easy affair in the beginning. But in the second set, I really had to think of a strategy to win. I am sorry to the fans who were supporting her," said Hingis. Sania had hit headlines after beating then US Open champion Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia in the last edition. Sania will play in doubles with Maria Kabchi Vento of Venezuela. (PTI)