There were mixed fortunes for the Indians at Wimbledon.
Mahesh Bhupathi and Sania Mirza, the French Open champions, crashed out of the mixed-doubles, losing 6-3, 6-1 to Australia’s Paul Hanley and Russia’s Alla Kudryavtseva in just 50 minutes.
The Indian pair, who had received a first-round bye, were expected to make it to round of 16, but they never looked the part on Saturday.
Mirza was broken decisively in the first set before both partners lost their serves in the second. Not only did Hanley and Kudryavtseva return better, they were also sharper around the net, out-hustling the Indians on Court 5.
On neighbouring Court 6, Leander Paes and Radek Stepanek completed a straight-sets victory over Jonathan Erlich and Andy Ram 6-2, 6-4, 7-6(5).
In the early parts of both matches, which began at the same time, the Indians in the crowd had situated themselves between the courts and had craned their necks this way and that.
Into the second set, Paes and Stepanek had their undivided attention, and though the third went to a tie-breaker, a round-of-16 place was never in doubt.
Another Indian in the pre-quarterfinals was Rohan Bopanna, and he didn’t even have to step on court. Bopanna and Jie Zheng, recipients of a first-round bye, received a walkover from Marcel Melo and Vera Zvonareva.