Indian players Sania Mirza and Rohan Bopanna set up a face-off in the Australian Open quarter-finals when they won their respective mixed doubles matches on Tuesday. While Bopanna and his Canadian partner Gabriela Dabrowski defeated Poland's Lukasz Kubot and Taiwan's Chang Yung-jan 6-4, 5-7 (10-3) in their second round tie, Sania with her Croatian partner Ivan Dodig edged out the Chinese-Austrian pair of Saisai Zheng and Alexander Peya 2-6, 6-3 (10-6) to reach to the last eight of the competition.
The unseeded duo of Bopanna and Dabrowski clinched the first set without much fuss but went down in the second before bouncing back in the third set tie-breaker in a match that lasted one hour and 16 minutes.
Sania and Dodig started off poorly by losing the first set 2-6. Sania and her opponent Zheng were both broken on their respective first serves in the opening set. At 2-2, a crucial break on Dodig's serve gave Zheng/Peya a 3-2 lead. They soon made it 5-2, with Peya holding his second serve and Mirza failing to hold her serve for the second time.
The Indo-Croatian pair made a fantastic comeback in the second set by breaking Peya's first serve to take the early lead. Mirza then saved two break points and finally held her serve for the first time in the match as they went 3-0 up. The early break was enough to help them see the set out 6-3 in 27 minutes and force a match tie-break.
Both pairs fought hard and there was very little to separate them in the deciding set. At 6-6, both had lost serve twice, Zheng lost serve on the following points, and Mirza held her's on two consecutive points to make it 9-6. Peya failed to hold under pressure, as Mirza/Dodig sealed the match in just over an hour.