China’s plucky Paris pair take positives

PARIS – Despite their loss in Sunday’s final, China’s women’s doubles tandem of Duan Yingying and Zheng Saisai were upbeat about the confidence they gained at the French Open.

Duan and Zheng were defeated 6-2, 6-3 by second-seeded Timea Babos of Hungary and Kristina Mladenovic of France in the final.

“We got chances in the match but let them slide away, and our momentum went down a bit. They played better and better,” Zheng said, adding that she and her partner will be better prepared in the future.

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“They had three consecutive final appearances at Grand Slams. We need to learn from them about how to play aggressively and fearlessly. When we make another final, we will also do it that way.”

Partnering for the first time, the Chinese duo said their Roland Garros run, which earned them a total of 280,000 euro (around $320,000) in prize money, was a big boost for their confidence.

“We advanced to the final in our first partnering experience, moving past strong opponents. We experienced a lot, which brought us great confidence,” Zheng said.

Duan concurred, adding: “We have many matches to go. Despite finishing runner-up, we have harvested a lot from the competition and there is much room for improvement.”

Zheng, who burst into tears after her exit from the singles competition, emphasized the importance of perseverance.

“As long as you keep a positive mind, everything can work out,” she said.


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