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Women's Doubles Champions: Hsieh, Mertens Capture Second Indian Wells Trophy As Duo
3 Min Read · March 16, 2024

Hsieh Su-wei remains ever watchable — on and off the court.

Not long after Hsieh and Elise Mertens landed their second Indian Wells doubles title together by beating Katerina Siniakova and Storm Hunter 6-3, 6-4, the 38-year-old took center stage in the winners’ media conference.

When Mertens pointed out that Hsieh delivered one spectacular shot, the veteran cheekily replied, “Only one?”

No, of course not, smiled Mertens.

Later, when Mertens was quizzed on why she turned to Hsieh as her partner for 2024, the Belgian spoke about how their games meshed and their previous success.

“It just naturally flowed a little bit throughout the matches that, okay, we're not starting from scratch, we already know each other,” said Mertens. “‘I know how you play, you know how I play.’”

Hsieh then piped in.

“I thought because I'm cute, that's why you asked me,” she said.

“And she is very cute, too,” Mertens happily acknowledged.

Hsieh collected her fourth doubles title in the desert overall.

She hadn’t played here since 2021, making her tour comeback in 2023 two months after last year’s event ended. As it turned out, her participation at this year’s edition wasn’t guaranteed since she was ill last month.

“It was a little bit special this year, because I didn't play this tournament for a while, and I was sick since Qatar, so I haven't practiced a lot,” said Hsieh. “And I couldn't do any exercise because the doctor suggest to me do not do any sport. Oh, I have to play doubles. If I play singles, I have no partner, no pressure, it's okay, but I have doubles. If I don't practice, then I couldn't say, ‘Elise, run!’ So I have my game plan, but now I feel much better during this tournament.”

Both teams didn’t drop a set on the way to the final. When they met in the semifinals at the Australian Open, Mertens and Hsieh edged proceedings in a high-quality tussle. Mertens is the current No. 1 in doubles, while Hsieh, Siniakova and Hunter have all held down the top ranking at some stage.

Siniakova — who won last year’s title with Barbora Krejcikova — and Hunter made the start they hoped for. The duo broke the Mertens serve for 1-0. However, they were broken in the next game and never got to 30 on their opponents’ serve the rest of the way. 

Hsieh and Mertens got the key break for 4-3. At 0-15, Hunter missed a forehand volley that she’d love to have back.

The set ended with Hsieh and Mertens tallying 10 straight points.

The lone break of set two came at 4-4. Leading 15-0 on the Hunter serve, Mertens struck an outrageous forehand lob with Hunter close to the baseline. Earlier, she had uncorked a brilliant backhand lob winner.

The spectacular Hsieh shot that Mertens referred to followed at 15-30. Siniakova seemed to have a comfortable put away at the net. The Czech hit her forehand well, but Hsieh quickly reacted behind the baseline, redirected and managed to keep the ball in play. She ended the point with a backhand winner and out came the ‘raise the roof’ celebration.

The break of serve was confirmed on the next point, and Hunter’s forehand long in the ensuing game wrapped matters up in one hour, 11 minutes.

“Very happy about our game today,” said Mertens. “I think a lot of things worked. We were there from the beginning. Only lost our serve once. Also, especially on the second set, we didn't drop anything.”

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