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Home > Sports > Tennis > PTI > Report

I find it hard to play Chakvetadze: Sania

September 02, 2007 17:57 IST

Sania Mirza's [Images] victory caravan halted abruptly at a speed breaker called Anna Chakvetadze [Images] and after her loss in the third round of the US Open , the Indian ace is scratching her head over how to clear the obstacle off her way in future.

Sania was tamed by Chakvetadze 6-2, 6-3 at the Flushing Meadows on Saturday and it is the fourth time in her career that the Hyderabadi fell to the Russian, who is ranked sixth in the world.

"I find it very hard to play her. She is very hard for a lot of players. I had to do something different. I didn't change it up enough," Sania said after her US Open dreams came crashing down.

In the tune-up to the season-ending Grand Slam, Sania was in great form and defeated four top-20 players. But every time she met Chakvetadze, the story unfolded with the same script.

Sania lost to the 20-year-old Russian in the finals at Stanford, in semi-finals in Cincinnati and in the last-four encounter at Hobart in January.

So far, in all the four meetings, Sania has been able to win just one set.

"You have to find a way to win. There are very few Grand Slam champions and finalists. That's our target. We are trying to get there," Sania said.

On Saturday, the 20-year-old Indian's very first service game came unstuck, and then in the last game Chakvetadze, after being denied two set points, broke Sania to pocket the first set.

Sania was trailing 5-1 in the second set before rallying to break Chakvetadze and ignite some hopes. But, after some nervy moments, the sixth-seeded wrapped up the encounter in 53 minutes and advanced to the round of 16.

"I did not play an ugly match. I was always running. She was dictating play. I like to dictate play. She served well. I didn't expect her to serve that well.

"I lost to a player who is top 10 in the world in the third round of a Slam. It's not that easy," Sania said.

Chakvetadze will take on Austria's Tamira Paszek who ousted Swiss 11th seed Patty Schnyder.

"If I play like today I should win every match. My body is ready and I'm mentally ready. I feel good. I feel consistent on court. I'm mentally strong," Chakvetadze said.

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