Wimbledon: India’s Rohan Bopanna and his Spanish mixed doubles partner Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez entered the second round after emerging victorious in a hard fought opening round battle against the American-Hungarian duo of Eric Butorac and Katalin Marosi at the Wimbledon tennis championships here.
The Indo-Spanish duo won 7-6 (9), 5-7, 7-5 in a lengthy battle that lasted for two hours and 17 minutes on Friday.
The two pairs were evenly matched for the better part of the contest, matching each other shot to shot, serving up eight aces each and winning points off their first service, hovering around the 70 percent mark.
The similarity was not just confined to that as both teams converted just four of the 12 break points they got (33 percent).
That evenness forced the contest into a first set tiebreak where also they were inseparable, with Bopanna-Sanchez claiming it 11-9.
But that didn’t put them in the driving seat as they were unable to surge home with the advantage, losing their serve at a crucial phase to concede the set 5-7.
The deciding set proceeded on similar lines, but Bopanna-Sanchez rectified their mistakes, converting two of their three break points to edge out their opponents 7-5, hitting 19 winners and claiming 128 of the 244 points played.
Bopanna-Sanchez will play the Romanian-Slovenian pair of Horia Tecau and Katarina Srebotnik in the second round.
Second seeded mixed doubles pair of Bruno Soares and Sania Mirza also advanced to the second round after getting a first round bye.
Seventh seeded duo of India’s Leander Paes and Swiss Martina Hingis also moved to the second round after getting a first round bye.