Baku, AZERBAIJAN. Jul 27 - Aug 02
RUS Flag Margarita Gasparyan 30 4
ITA Flag Karin Knapp 15 2
1
1

Serena & Vika's Common Connection

On Friday Max Mirnyi partnered Andrea Hlavackova to the US Open mixed doubles title and afterwards he was quizzed on his time alongside two of the WTA's other leading lights.

Published September 07, 2013 12:01

Serena & Vika's Common Connection
Victoria Azarenka, Max Mirnyi

NEW YORK, NY, USA - With 106 wins, 11 titles and nearly $10 million in prize money between them, Serena Williams and Victoria Azarenka have been 2013's two outstanding performers, and on Sunday afternoon they will meet in the final of the US Open.

And ahead of their showdown on Ashe, who better to pass judgment on the two protagonists than a man who helped both to taste Grand Slam glory for the first time.

Max Mirnyi partnered teenage versions of Serena Williams and Victoria Azarenka to the mixed doubles titles at Wimbledon and the US Open, respectively, and is happy to have played a part in shaping the career paths of two modern greats.

"They have had such prosperous and long careers after that first title they won," Mirnyi said in his press conference after winning the mixed doubles title alongside Andrea Hlavackova on Friday. "That first title hopefully gave them the push to believe that's what Grand Slam tennis is all about."

In 1998, Mirnyi helped a 16-year-old Williams win the first really significant silverware of her career in the mixed doubles at Wimbledon and then the US Open. One year later, the beaded and beaming face of the younger Williams sister was holding aloft the singles trophy in front of an awe-struck crowd on Arthur Ashe.

Fast-forward a decade and Mirnyi was savoring further silverware on Ashe, this time alongside fellow Belarusian Azarenka. Yet despite their obvious gifts, Mirnyi could not have foreseen the trophy-laden years that lay ahead.

"Both of them were so young at the time," Mirnyi said. "No one could have predicted that they would have the careers they're having today and would win so many more major titles.

"I'm happy and proud to have been part of those moments. Looking back, they probably would have been as good no matter what, but I was just lucky to be in the moment where they decided to play mixed when they were so young."

Mirnyi is also hoping that this fortnight's success can help spur his current mixed partner to more glory. 

"Now it's Andrea's turn to keep the tradition going," he added. "She's a little bit older, but there is still much more ahead of her.

"She's a great player. We already know about her doubles success and she's still so fit and plays a lot of singles so I'm sure this is going to help her feel more comfortable on the singles court."

Share this page!

Related news

  • Who's Serena's Top Threat This Summer?

    July 31, 2015
    Serena Williams is on a 28-match Grand Slam winning streak. Who's the biggest threat to stop her? Is it the No.2, the No.3, the No.4... or maybe the No.19? Tell us here!
  • #PowerToInspire: Victoria Azarenka

    July 31, 2015
    It's Victoria Azarenka's birthday - Happy Birthday Vika! To celebrate the former World No.1's big day, here are 26 of your very best messages on how she inspires you.
  • Serena Withdraws From Stanford

    July 31, 2015
    Serena Williams has withdrawn from the Bank Of The West Classic in Stanford citing a right elbow injury. The World No.1 was set to be the top seed at the Premier-level event.
To The Top
3