New York: Sania Mirza and Leander Paes made winning starts in their respective doubles events even as another veteran Mahesh Bhupathi bowed out with a first-round loss at the US Open here.
Sania and her Chinese partner Zheng Jie cruised into the second round of the women’s doubles event after they easily saw off the challenge of German Annika Beck and Puerto Rican Monica Puig in straight sets, winning 6-2, 6-2 on court 16 of the USTA National Tennis Center on Thursday.
The 10th seeds will play the Hungarian-American combine of Katalin Marosi and Megan Moulton-Levy.
Sania and Zheng came to Flushing Meadows high on confidence after winning the New Haven title last week.
Paes paired up with Radek Stepanek and breezed through to the second round of men’s doubles event with a straight set win over the unseeded pair of Jarkko Nieminen and Dmitry Tursunov. The scoreline read 6-4, 7-6 (7-4) at the end of the game.
The 4th seeded pair displayed attacking net game and winners, and looked to have full control over the game from the word go.
The Finnish-Russian pair played some fine tennis in the second set, and a few unforced error from the seasoned campaigners saw the game go into the tie-breaker. But Paes and his partner held their nerve to take the game in straight sets.
However, it was curtains for Bhupathi and his men’s doubles partner Philipp Petzschner of Germany as they lost 3-6, 6-7 (4-7) to the seeded pair of Daniel Nestor and Vasek Pospisil of Canada.
Divij Sharan recorded his first Grand Slam round victory with Taipei partner Yen-Hsun Lu as the unseeded pair defeated the Dutch team of Robin Hasse and Igor Sijsling 6-1, 7-5 in just 63 minutes.
Left-handed Divij had also played in Wimbledon main draw with compatriot Purav Raja but they had squandered a two-set lead to bow out of the grass court major.
Against Hasse and Sijsling, they converted six of the break chances and saved six of the seven breakpoints they faced.
In all, Divij and Lu won 73 points to 55 of their rivals.
They next face formidable Isareli pair of Jonathan Erlich and Andy Ram, who ousted 11th seeds Santiago Gonzalez of Mexico and American Scott Lipsky.
On Wednesday, Somdev Dev Varman battled his way through rain interruptions to notch up a hard-fought victory over Lukas Lacko of Slovakia in a gruelling opening round match in the men's singles.
The 28-year-old rallied from a set down to win the next two when rain interrupted the match. The Indian, however, returned to complete the job as he emerged 4-6, 6-1, 6-2, 4-6, 6-4 victories in the match which lasted three hours and 11 minutes at Flushing Meadows.
“I’m very happy with the way I played… It was an incredibly tough match,” Somdev had said after the match.