Melbourne: A second title eluded Leander Paes at this year's Australian Open as he and Elena Vesnina ended runners-up in the mixed doubles event after being outplayed by Horia Tecau and Bethanie Mattek-Sands in the summit clash on Sunday.

The fifth seeded Indo-Russian pair lost 3-6 7-5 (3-10) to eighth seeded Romanian-American combination in one hour and 48 minutes at the Rod Laver Arena. Paes was chasing a rare feat of winning two Grand Slam titles in the same tournament for the second time in his career but fell at the final hurdle.

In the 1999 Wimbledon, he had won both the men's doubles (with Mahesh Bhupathi) and mixed doubles (Lisa Raymond) titles.

On Saturday, Paes had won the men's doubles title with Czech Radek Stepanek to complete a career Grand Slam. It was Paes' fourth Australian Open mixed doubles final, having won two and lost two.

Overall, Paes has six mixed doubles titles with the French Open trophy missing from his Slam cabinet.
The combination of Tecau's strong serve and Mattek's stunning and powerful ground strokes, proved too hot to handle for Paes and Vesnina.

Mattek hit some breathtaking winners, specially with her crushing forehand while Tecau hardly erred on his serve.

Mattek and Tecau made a strong start to the match as they broke Paes and Vesnina in the second game to take the lead.

Mattek returned well and played aggressively. One of her lobs and then a winner by Tecau earned them three breakpoints straightaway. They broke Paes' serve when the Indian fired a backhand to net.

(Agencies)