Russians block Hingis return to grand slam winners circle
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Russians Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina beat Martin Hingis and Italy's Flavia Pennetta 2-6 6-3 6-2 to capture the U.S. Open doubles title on Saturday, denying the Swiss a return to the Flushing Meadows winner circle for the first time in 16 years.
Makarova and Vesnina, who teamed up in 2012, collect their second grand slam together having also lifted the French Open trophy in 2013.
Hingis, winner of five grand slam singles titles, nine doubles and one mixed doubles crowns, had looked poised to add a second U.S. Open doubles trophy to the one she won in 1998 after easily taking the opening set.
But the fourth seeded Russians, beaten earlier in the year by Hingis and Pennetta at Eastbourne, rallied to claim revenge and the title.
"We definitely had our chances, but when we look back starting the tournament, if you ask me to sign a paper that I'm in the finals, I would probably accept it with my eyes closed," said Hingis, who won her last slam title at the 2006 Australian Open in mixed doubles with partner Mahesh Bhupathi of India.
"When you're that close of course you want to win.
"We beat them before. It's not like we didn't have a chance. We showed that we can beat the best doubles teams out there today again, but I felt like the juice ran out a little bit at the end.
"I'm really happy. Still a great tournament," smiled Hingis. "That (loss) is not going to take anything away from that.
"Hopefully we will have more opportunities in the near future. We'll go to Asia and try to do our best there, and then next year there is again four grand slams."
(Reporting by Steve Keating. Editing by Patrick Johnston)
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