Indian tennis ace Sania Mirza with her Czech partner Barbora Strycova lost the Apia International women's doubles final in Sydney on Friday. The top seeded pair went down 4-6, 4-6 in an hour and 12 minutes to Timea Babos of Hungary and Russia's Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.
Sania and Strycova played for the first time together this year in this tournament, ahead of the Australian Open, starting January 16.
Sania had paired with America's Bethanie Mattek-Sands to win last week's Brisbane International tournament.
The opening set today was a closely-fought affair with just one point separating the winners and the losers. The Indo-Czech combination won 25 points as compared to 26 by Babos and Pavlyuchenkova.
In the second set also, Sania and Strycova could win only 27 points to their opponents' 30.
The Hungarian-Russian pair broke serve twice before Sania and Strycova fought back to equal the score. However, they were broken a third time at a crucial stage of the match and then Babos and Pavlyuchenkova held their nerves to serve out the match.
(With PTI inputs)