Sports

A Grand Slam finalist with Singapore links


The fourth-fastest serve in the women's draw at the Australian Open was delivered by a young woman who is partly powered by Hainanese chicken rice.


Today, she and Australian partner John-Patrick Smith will play third seeds Barbora Krejcikova and American Rajeev Ram in the mixed doubles final.


Sharma praised her partner Smith, saying, "JP sees and reads the court so well" and he, at 30 the more experienced player, repaid the compliment, saying: "She's fearless, she goes for her shots and goes for her serves."


During the final today, her mother, Susan Tan, who was a student sprinter from St Theresa's Convent, will be courtside, but her father, Devdutt, a semi-retired acoustic engineer, will be in Singapore.


Sharma swept through the Australian Open singles qualifying, dismissing Vera Zvonareva, Varvara Flink and finally Irina Khromacheva 12-10 in the third tie-breaker.


In the main draw, she beat Priscilla Hon in 129 sweaty, scorching minutes, then lost to the talented Greek Maria Sakkari but has since rolled through the mixed doubles without dropping a set.






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