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Azarenka & Kirilenko Avenge Melbourne Defeat

Victoria Azarenka and Maria Kirilenko beat Gisela Dulko and Flavia Pennetta, their Australian Open final conquerors, in Madrid.

Published May 04, 2011 08:37

Azarenka & Kirilenko Avenge Melbourne Defeat
Maria Kirilenko, Victoria Azarenka

MADRID, SpainVictoria Azarenka and Maria Kirilenko appeared to be on their way to their first major doubles title in January's Australian Open final, as they were up on Gisela Dulko and Flavia Pennetta, 62 41. However, Dulko and Pennetta mounted a comeback and they were the ones who captured their first major, 26 75 61.

The duos played for the first time since then on Wednesday, and No.5 seeds Azarenka and Kirilenko took some of the sting out of their disappointment in Melbourne with a 46 62 106 upset of the No.1 seeds in the quarterfinals of the Mutua Madrid Open.

"We are really happy to win today. It was a tough match," Azarenka tweeted. "Gisela and Flavia started really well, but we fought our way back in. It's very fun to play with Maria."

Interestingly enough, in each of the teams' three previous meetings, the winner went on to the title, good news for Azarenka and Kirilenko, whose one title together came in Cincinnati in 2010 after beating Dulko and Pennetta in the semifinals. In securing the first semifinal spot in Madrid, Azarenka and Kirilenko raised their career record together to an impressive 24-5, including 14-2 this year, having followed up their run to the final at the Australian Open with semifinal showings in Dubai and Indian Wells.

The second round also wrapped up Wednesday, highlighted by sixth-seeded Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Meghann Shaughnessy handling wildcards Francesca Schiavone and Samantha Stosur, 64 62, to raise their record to 18-5 in 2011. Next up for them are third-seeded Vania King and Yaroslava Shvedova. Also, seventh-seeded María José Martínez Sánchez and Anabel Medina Garrigues were sent home by Hsieh Su-Wei and Yan Zi, and Sania Mirza and Elena Vesnina recorded their 12th win in their last 13 matches to secure a quarterfinal berth.

The remaining three doubles quarterfinals will be played Thursday.

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