Hingis, Paes win Australian Open mixed doubles title
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) Martina Hingis won her first Grand Slam title since returning from retirement, combining with Leander Paes of India to win the Australian Open mixed doubles title with a 6-4, 6-3 victory over Kristina Mladenovic of France and Daniel Nestor of Canada.
With Paes serving for the match, Hingis hit a hard overhead to Mladenovic, who netted a half volley from near the baseline.
Hingis, who has three singles, four women's doubles and two mixed doubles titles at Melbourne Park, returned to the tour to play doubles in 2013 and teamed up with the 41-year-old Paes for the first time at the Australian Open. Paes has won three Australian Open mixed doubles titles.
The 34-year-old Hingis, who started playing at the Australian Open in 1995 and won the singles championships in 1997, '98 and '99, said the partnership with Paes had been two years in the making, adding that she was glad it came to fruition where ''I had my greatest memories.''
''After 20 years being back on the court... who would have thought,'' Hingis said. ''It's more than I could ever dream of.''
Hingis won the 2006 Australian Open mixed doubles title with Manesh Bhupathi, who was Paes' former longtime doubles partner.
In a news conference after the match, the pair heaped praise on each other with Paes saying ''our understanding of each other is amazing.''
''Martina is such a smart tennis player and she knows exactly what movements I'm going to do (and) I know what movements she's going to do,'' Paes said.
Asked if they would team up again in the future, Paes said, ''If she lets me. I don't know if she will.''
Hingis responded: ''Of course!''