Andrea Hlavackova and Max Mirnyi were down early but they didn't worry or panic - they just kept playing on and on, and eventually they walked away with the US Open mixed doubles title.
WTA Staff

NEW YORK, NY, USA - Andrea Hlavackova captured the second Grand Slam title of her career on Friday, winning the mixed doubles title at the US Open alongside very-experienced partner Max Mirnyi.

Things weren't easy by any means, though. Taking on the unseeded pairing of Santiago González and Abigail Spears, the No.7-seeded Hlavackova and Mirnyi had to battle back from 4-1 down in the first set - even fighting off four points for a 5-1 deficit - and eventually winning in two tight sets, 76(5) 63.

"I think in the beginning I started a bit slow," Hlavackova said. "Max was holding up the whole team, not letting us go down. I had a little bit of a tired start and was also putting myself down a bit with the bad start. He kept his head up and kept on pushing me. That was very important for the first set, and in the second set we just kept on going. I definitely think we were playing much better in the second set."

"It helps that Andrea has been very successful in doubles," Mirnyi said. "We kept on saying to each other all week, 'Keep riding the wave.' She's just been playing so well in the key moments out there.

"I watched her last couple doubles matches, and she was a very clutch player."

Hlavackova now has two Grand Slam titles to her name - she also captured the 2011 French Open women's doubles title alongside Lucie Hradecka. "This means a lot," the Czech said. "I've never done well in mixed doubles before and I couldn't figure out why, and then I got this great partner. We didn't do well in Wimbledon, and I was blaming myself. Then from here I started to believe it. I'm so happy."

Mirnyi echoed Hlavackova's sentiments. "This is one is a special one because it's the first mixed doubles title for Andrea," the Belarusian said. "Like she said, after playing for the first time at Wimbledon, right off the bat I felt much easier on the court with Andrea than probably most of my previous mixed doubles matches. She's a girl, pretty girl, smiles a lot, but she thinks like a man on the court. She looks for ways to win. She's very positive. Even though we lost first round at Wimbledon, I was eager to play again. When she texted me, 'Should we try again,' it was very easy to say yes to her.

"I'm glad I did, because from the first round here we played well. We enjoyed our practices together and whenever we were down in our matches, there was no sense of panic, discomfort or negativity. There were always smiles, and we kept on working together. That's why I believe we did well here."

It was a big occasion for Spears too - the American was in her first Grand Slam final of any kind.

Max Mirnyi, Andrea Hlavackova