Back Where It Began; Sania Mirza Just One Win From Wimbledon Glory
Sania first burst into limelight, winning the 2003 Wimbledon. Today, she’s in the final, vying for the doubles title.
Late into this Saturday night, once the ladies singles and men’s doubles final have been completed, Sania Mirza will walk onto the centre court at Wimbledon alongside Martina Hingis. An energetic Indian contingent will greet her and an eager TV audience at home will tune in.
It was at Wimbledon, back in 2003 that Sania first burst into limelight winning the junior girls doubles title with Russia’a Alisa Kleybanova. 12 years, and a roller coaster journey later, Sania finds herself on the verge of her first women’s doubles major.
Having won three mixed doubles slams, the stage won’t intimidate Sania. She is the world’s number one ranked doubles player after a sizzling run over recent months. It has all led to this moment. One more match goes to plan, and that tag treasured more than most by a tennis pro- Wimbledon champion- will be hers.
We just go out there and try to treat it like any other match. If we put more pressure on ourselves then I don’t think we can play our best. We don’t really think about what we have achieved or are going to achieve. We think about that moment.
– Sania Mirza
Sania and Hingis have reached the final without dropping a set, playing a captivating, aggressive brand of tennis. Sania- the enforcer, blasting ferocious groundstrokes. Hingis- the canny operator, working the angles, poaching at the net. It is a sparkling synergy.
We compliment each other’s games. Our temperaments match on the court as well. We try and have fun as much as we can, obviously, at this level but as competitors we suit each other.
– Sania Mirza
For Hingis of course, this is a second wind. The last of her nine women’s doubles slams came at the Australian open in 2002. She’s won the doubles crown twice at Wimbledon- in 1996 and 1998, 17 years ago! At 34, Hingis suddenly finds herself in familiar terrain, one she perhaps never imagined she would experience again.
We’ve both been around long enough, obviously she’s won at this level a lot. I think for her she’s achieved so much that no matter what she does it’s never enough.
– Sania Mirza
Across court in the final, the top seeds will find themselves against the second seeded Russian pairing of Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina. Twice slam champions already, the pair is certain to offer a stern challenge to the Indo-Swiss combine. Ironically, it was with Vesnina as partner that Sania reached her only women’s doubles final before this one- the 2011 French Open.
So as the shadows lengthen at centre court tonight, this confrontation has the makings of thrilling drama. It is a must watch!
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