Indian tennis star Sania Mirza and her doubles partner Bethanie Mattek-Sands lost their first round match in straight sets at the grasscourt tournament in Eastbourne.
The unseeded Indo-American pair lost 3-6, 4-6 to Christina Mchale and Sabrina Santamaria of USA in a match that lasted one hour and 18 minutes, late on Wednesday night.
The 34-year-old winner of six Grand Slams in doubles will pair up with Mattek-Sands in the women’s doubles event of Wimbledon, starting on June 28.
In singles, Elina Svitolina, Iga Swiatek and Bianca Andreescu were dumped out of the women’s singles while Gael Monfils crashed out of the men’s event.
Kazakhstan’s Elena Rybakina upset second seed Svitolina 6-4, 7-6 (7/3) to reach the quarter-finals while Andreescu, seeded third, went down 3-6, 3-6 to Anett Kontaveit of Estonia at the Wimbledon warm-up event.
Svitolina held game point to edge 5-4 ahead in the first set but Rybakina found three stunning forehand winners to snatch the crucial break and take the lead instead.
The world No 21 maintained her advantage, breaking early in the second set but missed an opportunity to take a 5-2 double-break lead and Ukraine’s Svitolina forced a tie-break. Undaunted, Rybakina refocused and a series of emphatic serves and backhands enabled her to dominate, sealing her third match point with a service winner.
Kontaveit breezed past Canada’s Andreescu, converting six of her eight break points against the 2019 US Open champion.
But top seed Aryna Sabalenka was untroubled by any thoughts of an upset as she stormed past Alison Riske, 6-1, 6-4.
Jelena Ostapenko came from a set and a break down to beat Birmingham champion Ons Jabeur 5-7, 6-4, 6-3 and Anastasija Sevastova saw off American teenager Coco Gauff 4-6, 7-5, 6-2.
In the men’s tournament, top seed Gael Monfils lost 6-4, 5-7, 6-4 to Australia’s world number 283 Max Purcell.
Monfils came within two points of defeat at 4-5 in the second set, but a crosscourt forehand winner sparked the Frenchman into life. From 3-5 down in the second set, Monfils won seven straight games before Purcell won five in a row to lead 5-3 in the decider and he calmly closed out the match.
Purcell will next play 2011 champion Andreas Seppi, who defeated Emil Ruusuvuori of Finland 6-2, 6-3
Former world No 1 Karolina Pliskova will drop out of the WTA’s top 10 for the first time in almost five years after her bid to retain the Eastbourne title was ruined by Camila Giorgi on Tuesday.
The fifth-seeded Czech was beaten 2-6, 6-2, 6-2 by Italian qualifier Giorgi in the first round.
Aryna Sabalenka (BLR x1) bt Alison Riske (USA) 6-1, 6-4
Camila Giorgi (ITA) bt Shelby Rogers (USA) 6-3, 4-6, 6-2
Anett Kontaveit (EST) bt Bianca Andreescu (CAN x3) 6-3, 6-3
Viktorija Golubic (SUI) bt Belinda Bencic (SUI x6) 6-4, 6-4
Jelena Ostapenko (LAT) bt Ons Jabeur (TUN) 5-7, 6-4, 6-3
Darya Kasatkina (RUS) bt Iga Swiatek (POL x4) 4-6, 6-0, 6-1
Anastasija Sevastova (LAT) bt Coco Gauff (USA) 4-6, 7-5, 6-2
Elena Rybakina (KAZ) bt Elina Svitolina (UKR x2) 6-4, 7-6 (7/3)
Max Purcell (AUS) bt Gael Monfils (FRA x1) 6-4, 5-7, 6-4
Andreas Seppi (ITA) bt Emil Ruusuvuori (FIN) 6-2, 6-3
Lorenzo Sonego (ITA x3) bt John Millman (AUS) 6-4, 6-2
Alexander Bublik (KAZ x8) bt Egor Gerasimov (BLR) 6-2, 6-2
Ilya Ivashka (BLR) bt Alexei Popyrin (AUS) 6-7 (5/7), 7-5, 6-3
Kwon Soon-woo (KOR) bt Marton Fucsovics (HUN) 7-6 (7/4), 6-7 (4/7), 6-3
Vasek Pospisil (CAN) bt Alejandro Davidovich Fokina (ESP x6) 7-6 (7/1), 0-0 – retired
Alex de Minaur (AUS x2) bt Liam Broady (GBR) 6-3, 6-4
With PTI and AFP Inputs
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