Hsieh & Peng Hold Off Black & Mirza

No.1 seeds Hsieh Su-Wei and Peng Shuai withstood a test from last week's Oeiras champs, Cara Black and Sania Mirza, to make the Mutua Madrid Open doubles semifinals.

Published May 08, 2014 12:12

Hsieh & Peng Hold Off Black & Mirza
Hsieh Su-Wei, Peng Shuai

MADRID, Spain - No.1 seeds Hsieh Su-Wei and Peng Shuai overcame a major challenge on Thursday to secure a semifinal spot in doubles at the Mutua Madrid Open.

After receiving a first round bye and then beating Francesca Schiavone and Sílvia Soler-Espinosa in straight sets in the second round, Hsieh and Peng took on fifth-seeded Cara Black and Sania Mirza in the quarterfinals.

Hsieh and Peng fell to Black and Mirza in their first clash in the Tokyo semifinals last year, and then in their most recent encounter beat them in March's Indian Wells final.

This time, Hsieh and Peng rallied from 5-2 down in the first set but ultimately dropped the set. They quickly got out to a 5-0 lead in the second set and shortly thereafter forced a deciding match tie-break. After going down 3-0, they staged a mini-rally and went on to a 5-7, 6-1, 10-8 triumph - improving to 17-4 on clay as a duo.

"We played well in the first set and even better in the second," Peng said. "In the tie-break, both teams played really well and we had some amazing points. They are a great team. We're really happy to win."

Next up for Hsieh and Peng are the surprise team of the draw, wildcard entrants Garbiñe Muguruza and Carla Suárez Navarro. The Spaniards are playing just their second event together, but already scored wins over four-time Grand Slam champs Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci in Miami, former US Open champions Liezel Huber and Lisa Raymond in the first round here, former Wimbledon winners and No.4 seeds Kveta Peschke and Katarina Srebotnik in the second round and then eight-time WTA titlists and No.6 seeds Raquel Kops-Jones and Abigail Spears in the quarterfinals.

Muguruza and Suárez Navarro's latest win, which came the same day as Suárez Navarro's third round singles loss against Serena Williams, was a narrow 2-6, 7-5, 10-8 defeat of Kops-Jones and Spears.

Also moving on were No.2 seeds and 2012 Madrid champions Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci, 7-5, 6-3, over Vania King and Zheng Jie. Their semifinal opponents will be Anabel Medina Garrigues and Yaroslava Shvedova, who were 6-4, 6-2 winners over defending champions Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Lucie Safarova.

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