ROME, Italy – Martina Hingis and Sania Mirza moved confidently into their third consecutive clay court final with a straight set win over Irina-Camelia Begu and Monica Niculescu on Saturday evening.
For the first time since teaming up, Hingis and Mirza have found their status as the most talked about team on tour under threat in recent weeks. Defeats to emerging rivals Caroline Garcia and Kristina Mladenovic in Stuttgart and Madrid saw the World No.1s arrive in Rome with a point to prove.
At the Foro Italico, though, Hingis and Mirza have been faultless, negotiating a tricky draw with consummate ease. Against Begu and Niculescu they raced into a 4-0 lead, and while this level proved unsustainable the top seeds still ran out comfortable 6-3, 6-4 winners.
Standing between them and a fifth title of 2016 will be No.7 seeds Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina.
Form and fitness problems have seen the Russians slip down the rankings, but judging by performances this week they are rounding into form at just the right time. Against No.4 seeds Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka they were particularly impressive, withstanding a late charge to run out 6-2, 7-5 winners.
Let's rewatch @mhingis and @MirzaSania's match point! They are going straight to the #ibi16 doubles final! #WTA pic.twitter.com/1Pg7ATVZZ7
— Internazionali Bnl (@InteBNLdItalia) May 14, 2016