Mirnyi, Azarenka win mixed gold for Belarus
LONDON (Reuters) - Belarussian mixed doubles duo Victoria Azarenka and Max Mirnyi silenced the Centre Court crowd at Wimbledon on Sunday when they beat men's champion Andy Murray and partner Laura Robson to win the first Olympic mixed doubles medal tournament since 1924.
Murray had already claimed the men's singles gold by thrashing Roger Federer but fell just short of a magnificent double as the Belarussians won 2-6 6-3 10-8.
Roared on by a patriotic crowd still buzzing from Murray's exploits, the British pair bounded into an early lead, taking the first set comfortably.
The Belarusian top seeds hit back to take the second, however, to set up a tense championship tiebreak.
Mirnyi and Azarenka, who won bronze in the women's singles, moved 9-6 ahead and although the British pair saved two match points Azarenka's sharp volley claimed Belarus's first gold medal in Olympics tennis.
"It's definitely very different emotions and a very different accomplishment from being number one in the world and winning the Australian Open," Azarenka told reporters.
"It has been a dream come true for me to achieve gold because I think every athlete in the world is dreaming about this prize to get. You don't get so many chances."
(Reporting by Martyn Herman, editing by Greg Stutchbury)
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