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Fernandez, Zvereva Win Doubles

Associated Press
Sunday, June 8, 1997; 10:52 a.m. EDT

PARIS — Gigi Fernandez of the United States and Natasha Zvereva of Belarus won their fifth French Open women's doubles title Sunday, their 13th Grand Slam victory.

Fernandez and Zvereva, the top-seeded pair, beat the fifth-seeded Americans, Mary Joe Fernandez and Lisa Raymond, 6-2, 6-3.

For Raymond, it was her second loss in a final in as many days. In Saturday's mixed doubles, she and Patrick Galbraith were beaten by Rika Hiraki of Japan and Mahesh Bhupathi of India, 6-4, 6-1. That gave Japan and India their first Grand Slam titles in the Open era.

Fernandez and Zvereva won the French Open four years in a row, until they were beaten by Fernandez and Lindsay Davenport in last year's final.

"We were ready this time,'' Fernandez said. "We weren't going to make the same mistake.''

Fernandez has won three other Grand Slam doubles titles with different partners, including one French Open, while Zvereva has two.

Asked why she does so well in Paris, Fernandez quipped: "It's the red wine, Bordeaux.''

She and Zvereva teamed up again only recently, after playing with different partners at the start of the year.

Zvereva made her ninth straight appearance in the championship match, a streak that goes back to 1989. She won the title that first year with Larisa Neiland, and lost the next two with the same partner.

© Copyright 1997 The Associated Press

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