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Shibahara, Koolhof win mixed in Paris

Japan’s Ena Shibahara and Wesley Koolhof of the Netherlands have won the French Open mixed doubles title by beating the Norwegian-Belgian pair of Ulrikke Eikeri and Joran Vliegen in straight sets.

Shibahara wrapped up matters on Thursday for the second seeds with an ace after one hour 29 minutes on Court Philippe Chatrier to win 7-6 (7-5) 6-2. It was the first grand slam title for her and Koolhof.

Unseeded Eikeri and Vliegen had entered on short notice and had a remarkable run to the final where they made up a 5-2 deficit in the first set but squandered a 5-2 lead in the tiebreak.

Shibahara and Koolhof were in full command from then on, winning five games in a row from 1-0 down in the second set en route to the title.

“It was so much fun playing. This week is a dream come true,” Shibahara said on court.

Eikeri, who could have become the first grand slam champion from Norway in the Open Era since 1967, said playing her first grand slam was “a dream come true” as well.

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