View Full Version : Sania faces an uphill journey

Jan 3rd, 2009, 03:57 PM

Sania faces an uphill journey

Mumbai: Sania Mirza is cautiously optimistic about 2009 as she begins her long journey towards regaining the lost glory on the tennis arena.
The Indian star will be playing her fifth straight Australian Open, starting January 11, but faces the prospect of going into the year’s first Grand Slam without having played a competitive tournament following a four-month injury layoff.

Being ranked No.101 — thanks to a wrist surgery that kept her out of court for the most part of 2008 — means that Mirza won’t get direct entries into top tier tournaments unless she is given a wild card.
A star-studded exhibition event in Hong Kong will be Mirza’s first tournament since she lost in the first round at Beijing Olympics. The 22-year-old will be part of an Asia-Pacific team against European and American teams led by world No.1 Jelena Jankovic and reigning Wimbledon Champion Venus Williams, respectively.

The Hyderabad girl is looking for a wild card, courtesy the Hobart event (from January 11) where she reached the quarter finals last year. In case she doesn’t get one, the Pattaya Open in Thailand in February would be her first WTA event.

What this means is that Mirza has 120 points to defend — 30 from Hobart and 90 from the Australian Open — and a bad outing in Melbourne could see her ranking plummet to 160.

“The Australian Open will be more special because I am coming back from injury. It is the place where I played my first Grand Slam … but I am living in the moment,” Mirza told The Telegraph.
“I don’t want to get ahead of myself. I don’t know what’s going to happen two weeks from now or thereafter. I am taking it day by day,” she said.
Besides the climb back into the top-30, where she was at the end of 2007, winning her second title — she won her first in 2005 in Hyderabad — could be another motivating factor.

“You will be surprised to know that not many in the top-100 have won a title in their entire career. I am lucky I won mine at a very early stage and have come close to winning the second,” she said.
“It is a motivating factor but it is not a realistic target for now. There is a huge difference between being fit and match fit. It’s not some magic, cannot be done overnight.”

Mirza was disappointed that the two women’s tournaments in the country, the Bangalore Open and Sunfeast Open, have gone off the WTA calendar.
“It’s disheartening. They gave the people and the players of this country an opportunity to see what the level is. It is unfortunate but people (involved with the tournaments) have their reasons.”

The Fed Cup, which follows immediately after The Australian Open, in Perth poses another challenge for Mirza. The government’s recent ruling that only Indian citizens can represent India in sports has made Shikha Uberoi and Sunitha Rao ineligible for the women’s team event.
“It is the government’s decision. As long as I am selected, I will give my best regardless of who is going to play with me,” she said.

Jan 3rd, 2009, 03:58 PM
Shikha, Sunitha out of Fed Cup squad

New Delhi, Jan 2: Sunitha Rao and Shikha Uberoi were left out of the Indian Fed Cup squad as per the government's new ruling on player representation when the team was announced here today by the All-India Tennis Association.
Sania Mirza will lead the squad and finding a place in the side are Ankita Bhambri, Sanaa Bhambri and Rushmi Chakravarthy.
The squad was announced for the Fed Cup Asia-Oceania Zone Group I tie to be held in Perth from 4-7 February. Eight teams will vie for the top spot ~ a place in the World Group II Play-offs to be held in April. India, Australia, Korea, Thailand, Chinese Taipei, Indonesia, New Zealand and Uzbekistan will be divided into two groups of four with the winner of each group squaring off for a place in the world group.
Both Sikha and Sunitha, who hold US passports, were part of India's previous Fed Cup campaign. However, with the government ruling that only players holding Indian passports would be eligible to represent the country, they were sidelined. The squad was decided after a tele-conference among national selectors Anil Dhupar, SP Misra, Akhtar Ali and Balram Singh. Jaidip Mukerjea, chairman of the 2010 CMG preparation project was also consulted. The team will undergo a week-long coaching camp from 25-30 January.

Miss Amor
Jan 3rd, 2009, 04:08 PM
She is one of the most over-hyped players currently active

Jan 3rd, 2009, 04:10 PM
She is one of the most over-hyped players currently active

Jan 3rd, 2009, 05:24 PM
I wish her good luck in 09! She needs it!

Jan 3rd, 2009, 05:47 PM
I hope she can work on her game more, especially her fitness! :D

Jan 3rd, 2009, 05:51 PM
She is one of the most over-hyped players currently active

Probably because she comes from a country not known for producing top class women players. If she was Russian she'd just be another Kirilenko.

I hope she gets her fitness and game back as she is great to watch.

Jan 3rd, 2009, 06:17 PM
She is one of the most over-hyped players currently active

That's just cuz there aren't a lot of hot female Indian players (or hot male Indian players for that matter.) And there are a lot of Indians in the world, so they need someone to be excited about.

In any case, I think she's awesome, so I hope she's able to come back up in the rankings.

Jan 3rd, 2009, 06:36 PM
Sania = Awesomness. :worship:

Jan 3rd, 2009, 06:40 PM
She is one of the most over-hyped players currently active

Agree. Since 2005 when she was winning matches, the rave was about her forehand and during that year, the networks had her and Sharapova match as the match of the day at USO only to see Maria "school" her. In 2007, she had a good USO Series run only to be outdone by Anna Chakvetadze. Other than the 2007 USO Series, she has not done any thing noteworthy since 2005. Also in that time period, she has to deal with numerous injuries.

Jan 3rd, 2009, 08:09 PM
I wish her the best of luck in 2009.

Jan 3rd, 2009, 09:04 PM
Maybe she is over-hyped but I find her very endearing.

Jan 3rd, 2009, 10:24 PM
Good luck in 2009 Sania - please come back to the top 100! :hug:

:armed: Lay off Sania peeps, she's really nice! :ras:

Jan 3rd, 2009, 11:01 PM
Good Luck in 2009 Sania! :bounce: