Storm Hunter and Katerina Siniakova recover to make women’s doubles semi-finals

Katerina Siniakova and Storm Hunter have won through to the Australian Open doubles last four.

Katerina Siniakova and Storm Hunter have won through to the Australian Open doubles last four. Photo: AAP

Summer golden girl Storm Hunter and her new Czech partner Katerina Siniakova have staged an incredible fightback to advance to the Australian Open women’s doubles semi-finals.

Hunter, the world’s top-ranked women’s doubles ace, and Siniakova battled back from 3-0 down in the deciding set to win their quarter-final against Barbora Krejcikova and Laura Siegemund on Wednesday.

The third seeds never looked like breaking serve until they did so twice late on in a thrilling 4-6 7-5 6-4 victory on Margaret Court Arena.

After being Australia’s last woman standing in the singles following a career-best run to the third round, Hunter is now two wins away from capturing a maiden grand slam crown.

Krejcikova eliminated the 29-year-old from the singles with a three-set comeback win on Rod Laver Arena last week but Hunter gained a semblance of revenge on Wednesday.

In another twist of fate, Krejcikova and Siniakova won the past two Australian Open women’s doubles crowns – and also completed a career grand slam together – before Siniakova opted to team up with Hunter this year.

Hunter put away the winning backhand volley on match point after being the dominant player of the four combatants but said she really wasn’t sure how she and Siniakova had dodged defeat.

“We really had to dig deep and just trust each other and fight really, really hard,” Hunter said.

“We did that when we were down a break in the third.

“We just thought, ‘let’s just keep going, keep going’ and we somehow got the win, which was amazing.”

Hunter and Siniakova will face second seeds Hsieh Su-We, from Taiwan, and Belgian Elise Mertens – the Australian’s long-time former partner – for a place in the final.

Hunter’s mixed partner Matt Ebden is on track to snare a third grand slam trophy after reaching the men’s doubles semi-finals with veteran Indian Rohan Bopanna.

The second seeds beat Argentine duo Maximo Gonzalez and Andres Molteni 6-4 7-6 (7-5) on Wednesday to move to within two wins of the title.

Ebden and Bopanna will play the unseeded Czech-Chinese pairing of Tomas Machac and Zhang Zhizhen in the last four.

Win or lose, 43-year-old Bopanna will become the oldest men’s doubles No.1 when the new rankings are released on Monday.

Ebden won Wimbledon alongside fellow Aussie Max Purcell in 2022, and picked up the Australian Open mixed doubles with compatriot Jarmila Gajdosova in 2013.

The West Australian was top seed in the mixed doubles at Melbourne this year with Hunter but the duo suffered a surprise second-round loss to local wildcards Jaimee Fourlis and Andrew Harris.

Fourlis and Harris have progressed all the way to the semi-finals and take on third seeds Hsieh and Pole Jan Zielinksi later on Wednesday night.

Fourlis and Harris could potentially meet another Australian wildcard team, Marc Polmans and Olivia Gadecki, in the final.

Polmans and Gadecki play second seeds Neil Skupski of Great Britain and American Desirae Krawczyk in the semis later on Wednesday.

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