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December 14, 2006 4:33am CST
SANIA MIRZA i was sad when she was defeated DOHA (Reuters) -- China's Zheng Jie silenced hundreds of raucous Indian fans by defeating starlet Sania Mirza in the Asian Games women's singles final on Wednesday. Zheng finally overcame the 20-year-old Indian 6-4 1-6 6-1 in a clash lasting almost two hours. "It was tough," a beaming Zheng told reporters. "Everyone was supporting Sania, so I had to keep going in the final set."Mirza had the vocal backing of the crowd throughout the tennis tournament, with hundreds of Indian expatriates flocking to watch their nation's young sporting icon play each day. Zheng needed courtside attention in the second set due to thigh strain but forced a series of errors from Mirza in the third to win comfortably. Mirza, who dumped Chinese top seed Li Na out of the competition in the semifinals, was full of praise for her opponent after she rattled off precise two-handed ground strokes to win key rallies in the third set."On the whole I should have done better," said a dejected Mirza after collecting her second silver medal. India lost to Taiwan in the women's team final. Mirza, who collected a warning after hurling her racket into the ground in frustration, denied the pressure of Indian expectation got to her."I don't feel pressure, it only motivates me," she said."That's why I'm still smiling. "It's great so many people came here to support me."