Muhammad and Townsend win doubles title at Adelaide International 1, first event of 2023
The first tour-level trophy of 2023 was won by a pair of Americans.
The doubles team of Asia Muhammad and Taylor Townsend upset top-seeded Katerina Siniakova and Storm Hunter 6-2, 7-6(2) to win the Adelaide International 1.
It's Muhammad's eighth career WTA doubles title, and her first since she won Melbourne Summer Set with Jessica Pegula 12 months ago. For Townsend, the victory is a full circle one: Muhammad was by her side when she won her first WTA doubles title in Auckland in 2020. Later that year, she announced her pregnancy, and Saturday's victory secured the lefty her first WTA-level title as a mom.
Seeded No. 6, Muhammad and Townsend knocked off three teams seeded ahead of them to take the title, as well as three-time major-winners Timea Babos and Kristina Mladenovic in Round 2. They came from a set down to beat Babos and Mladenovic, and later beat No. 4 seeds Shuko Aoyama and Ena Shibahara in the quarterfinals, and No. 2 seeds Lyudmyla Kichenok and Jelena Ostapenko in the semifinals for a berth opposite the No. 1 seeds.
Doubles world No. 1 Siniakova and No. 10 Hunter were contesting their first final as a pair, as despite the Czech and Aussie's higher rankings, there was little they could do to cool off a red-hot American pair. Muhammad and Townsend won the first four games of the match, and pocketed the first set in under a half hour. Though the Americans lost a break advantage in the second set, they saved a set point later on and rode a wave of momentum late in the tiebreak by sweeping the last five points of the match.
"It's always really great to see the hard work you've put in in the offseason come to fruition in the first tournament of the year," Townsend said on court in victory. "Asia, I'm so glad to be sharing the court with you again—it's been a long time."
The win at the WTA 500 event is also Muhammad and Townsend's first triumph at an event higher than a WTA 250.