Oeiras (Portugal), May 2: India’s Sania Mirza and her Zimbabwean partner Cara Black progressed to the $250,000 Portugal Open women’s doubles semi-finals while Somdev Devvarman was outclassed by top seed Tomas Berdych in the men’s singles second round here Thursday.
Somdev, Indiaa’s top ranked singles player, lost to the Czech 6-3, 6-2 in an hour and 15 minutes. Berdych was superior in every single department of the match. The World No. 6 was clinical with his serves, winning 85 percent points on his first serve and recording six aces to the Indian’s one.
Somdev to his credit managed to win three break points but failed to convert any. On the other hand, Bedych converted three of the five break opportunities he won. The 102-ranked Indian had beaten Matthew Ebden, in the opening round Tuesday, his first victory after five straight first-round defeats. Meanwhile, Purav Raja and Divij Sharma’s run in the tournament came to end as they went down to men’s doubles top seeds Pablo Cuevas and David Marrero in the quarterfinals. The Indian pair lost to Uruguayan-Spanish team 6-2, 6-2 in just 54 minutes.
Earlier, the top seeded Indian-Zimbabwean combine overcame Spanish-Chinese pair of Silvia Soler-Espinosa and Shuai Zhang 6-3, 6-4 in an hour and 10 minutes on the clay courts of Sports Complex of Jamor. Though Silvia and Shuai broke their opponents once in the first set, the top seeds responded by converting two of the seven break points they earned.
The second set turned out to be even more difficult to hold on to service games as there were a total of five service breaks. But the Indian-Zimbabwean duo got the significant break needed to clinch the set and match. In the next round, Sania and Cara will take on American third seeds Liezel Huber and Lisa Raymond for a place in the summit clash.