Rising Indian tennis player Ankita Raina and her Dutch partner Bibiane Schoof beat China's Jia-Qi Kang and Japan's Miyabi Inoue 6-3, 3-6, 10-7 in the final of the Thailand ITF doubles event at Nonthaburi, Thailand on Saturday.
The number one seeded pairing put up a tense fight to bag the title after the match came down to a tie-breaker. With both sides putting up equal margin wins in the two sets that were played, Ankita Raina and Bibiane Schoof won nine games to their opponents' eight to pick up 60 points against Jia-Qi Kiang and Miyabi Inoue’s 52.
Earning prize after lucky progression
Ankita Raina's victory was set up after the pair made their way into the final following Romania’s Nicoleta Dascălu and Switzerland’s Simona Waltert being forced to pull out during the first set of their semi-final.
Regardless of that fortunate turn of events on Friday, the Indo-Dutch duo held the upper hand in the match, as they were leading 4-1.
Ankita Raina on the rise
Saturday's win comes just a week after the 27-year-old Raina won the singles and doubles crown in the previous $25,000 ITF women's event in Nonthaburi.
Paired up with Bibiane Schoofs on that occasion as well, she defeated the local team of Mananchaya Sawangkaew and Supapitch Kuearum 6-4, 6-2.
"It's a positive start to the season,” she had told the Press Trust of India then.
Her positive start continued as following that, on Sunday, she beat France's Chloe Paquet 6-3, 7-5 in the singles final.
With a WTA Challenger win under belt, as well as ten singles and 16 doubles titles on the ITF women's circuit, the Ahmedabad-born Raina has been one of the up-and-coming stars of Indian tennis.
Sania Mirza getting put out of action meant Ankita Raina has been able to seize her opportunities in 2019 and become the top-ranked Indian women tennis player in both the singles as well as doubles category.