Mirza hopes to extend run with Cara


ACE ZIMBABWEAN doubles tennis star Cara Black’s playing partner Sania Mirza from India says she is hopeful the pair will extend their unbeaten run in the women’s doubles competition, next season.


The pair finished last season on a high in their first two tournaments together, winning nine matches on the trot as they clinched back-to-back titles at the Pan-Pacific Open in Japan and the China Open title in October.

The two impressive wins in addition to an earlier title in New Zealand at the start of the year saw Black being crowned Zimbabwe’s sportsperson of the year.

Speaking on the sidelines of the ITPA Tennis Doubles Masters event at Khar Gymkhana on Saturday, Mirza said she was looking forward to her partnership with Black.

“Cara and I haven’t lost a match. We won the three tournaments we played. We are looking forward to our new partnership. She was in Hyderabad practising with me.

“We are really excited about it. We are doing the right things,” Mirza, ranked World No 9 in the doubles rankings, said.

“I have a good partnership with Cara and we get along.

“More than that she is very experienced. She has done it all.

“Be it number one in the world, she has won grand slams, so I learn a lot from her as well. She is extremely humble. At the moment I will have to say Cara Black (is great) because I am playing with her,” she added.

Meanwhile, Black is expected to return to action next week when she defends her ASB Classic title in Auckland with New Zealand’s Marina Erakovic from December 30 to January 4.

The former world number one doubles tennis player will team up one last time with Erakovic, before she begins a new partnership with Indian doubles specialist Sania Mirza at the Australian Open.

Black officially made her comeback at the ASB Classic in January last year after almost a year away from the game following the birth of her first child Lachlan.

Together with Australia’s Anastasia Rodionova, the pair was given a doubles wildcard for the tournament and shocked everyone by going all the way to winning the coveted title.