Sydney, Jan 12 (IANS) Sania Mirza and Martina Hingis brushed off the challenge from Anastasia Rodionova and Arina Rodionova 6-2, 6-3 in the first round of the Sydney International tennis tournament here on Tuesday. Sania and Martina, who have extended their winning streak to 27 matches, thus qualified for the quarter-finals. They will meet the Chinese pair of Liang Chen and Shuai Peng in the last eight stage. The Indo-Swiss combination are on the longest winning run since 2012 when the Italian duo of Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci won 25 consecutive matches. 

The top-ranked pair need one more victory to equal the longest women’s doubles winning streak which was achieved by Gigi Fernández and Natasha Zvereva when they won 28 matches in a row in 1994. There was good news for Indian fans in men’s doubles also, as Rohan Bopanna and his Romanian partner Florin Mergea survived a tough challenge to win their opening round contest. The fourth-seeded Indo-Romanian combination faced a tough battle from Denis Istomin and Henri Kontinen before carving out a 6-7, 6-3, 10-8 victory.

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