Austalian Open: Barbora Krejcikova, Rajeev Ram claim mixed doubles title


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Austalian Open: Barbora Krejcikova, Rajeev Ram claim mixed doubles title

No. 3 seeds Barbora Krejcikova and Rajeev Ram defeated Australian wildcards Astra Sharma and John-Patrick Smith 7-6 (3) 6-1 in the Australian Open mixed doubles final to claim their maiden Grand Slam mixed doubles title. Krejcikova, 23, and 34-year-old Ram blew an early break but kept their focus in the tie-break to clinch the opener.

Sharma, 23, and 30-year-old Smith never recovered from losing the first set as Ram and Krejcikova got off to a quick 3-0 second-set lead, before they claimed their second break of the second set in the sixth game to put an end to the hopes of the Australian wildcard duo.

Krejcikova and Ram won 78 percent of their first serve points, hit 19 winners and converted 3-of-12 of their break point chances in an hour and 11 minutes of play. Ram and Krejcikova were playing together mixed doubles just for the second time ever.

They failed to make a deep run at Melbourne Park a year ago as they were beaten in the first round. Ram also won the 2016 Olympic mixed doubles title alongside Venus Williams. On the other side, Sharma and Smith's stunning Australian Open campaign ended with a disappointing final loss.

Sharma and Smith, who were playing together for the first time, didn't drop a set in four matches played on their way to the final but failed to deliver a strong performance when it mattered most. Sharma and Smith beat some big doubles names at Melbourne Park as they stunned Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Jamie Murray in the quarter-final, before they also picked up a surprise semi-final win over Nicole Melichar and Bruno Soares respectively. Full result:

[3] Barbora Krejcikova (CZE) & [3] Rajeev Ram (USA) d. [WC] Astra Sharma (AUS) & [WC] John-Patrick Smith (AUS) 7-6 (3) 6-1