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Mirnyi Wins 10th Grand Slam Title

New York, U.S.A.

Mirnyi© Getty ImagesMax Mirnyi teams with Andrea Hlavackova to win his third US Open mixed doubles crown.

Max Mirnyi claimed his 10th Grand Slam title Friday by partnering Czech Andrea Hlavackova to the US Open mixed doubles crown. The pair rallied from 1-4 in the first set, in which they later saved three set points, to defeat Santiago Gonzalez and Abigail Spears 7-6(5), 6-3.

“Max was unbelievable today,” said Hlavackova, who splits $150,000 with 'The Beast'. “He was covering 80 percent of the court, so it was easy for me to come up with some magic returns.”

Mirnyi said: "After playing 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 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."

Mirnyi, of Belarus, and Hlavackova saved a match point in the semi-finals, when they defeated Kristina Mladenovic and Daniel Nestor 12-10 in a match tie-break.

Mirnyi, who is the reigning Olympic mixed doubles gold medalist with Victoria Azarenka, added his 10th Grand Slam doubles title (six men's doubles, four mixed doubles) with the victory. Five of those titles have come at the US Open over a 15-year span, beginning with a mixed doubles title with Serena Williams in 1998. He also titled with Azarenka in 2007.

He said that mixed doubles had evolved significantly since his first title in '98. "I think overall it became much more physical. As you see, today is a great example. Abby Spears treated my serve with ease. And that's disturbing... On a few occasions I went full on. There are couple 130 miles an hour, 125. She just stuck it back at my feet.

"Probably wasn't the case the first time I won mixed doubles here. It was in '98 with Serena. We played Lisa Raymond and Pat Galbraith, and the balls were coming back as lollipops at the time."

Mirnyi won US Open men's doubles titles with Lleyton Hewitt in 2000 and with Mahesh Bhupathi in 2002.

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