Winning a Slam despite three surgeries is special: Sania

Jun 09, 2012, 07:00 IST | Ashwin Ferro

The flagbearer of Indian women's tennis Sania Mirza has made it a habit of somehow bouncing back time and again to shut up her truckload of critics. And on Thursday, the first lady of Indian tennis did it once again, when she clinched the French Open mixed doubles title � her second Grand Slam title � with compatriot Mahesh Bhupathi at the Roland Garros.

The 26-year-old, once in the world’s Top 30, recently copped flak from all quarters after falling outside the Top 100 singles ranking earlier this year despite the fact that she has been riddled with a series of injuries. Sania has undergone three surgeries — on her wrist and both knees. It’s no wonder then that she proudly said that her French Open win was special given the fact that she’s been able to successfully bounce back from her third surgery. 

“Any Grand Slam title is special but I’m particularly thrilled that I was able to bounce back this time after my third surgery. There were moments in the last five years, when I underwent three surgeries, when I felt I might never be able hold that tennis racquet again,” Mirza told MiD DAY from Paris yesterday, a day after she became India’s first female multiple Grand Slam champion.

The final scoreline 7-6 (3), 6-1 against Santiago Gonzalez of Mexico and Klaudia Jans-Ignacik reads easy, but the match was anything but that, said the Hyderabadi. “Gonzalez and Klaudia had made this final after beating some heavy duty teams. So they were really high on confidence. We knew we had to play our best,” she said. 

Bhupathi-Mirza had a particularly tough game in the quarter-finals of their French Open campaign, against the second seeded Czech-American pair of Kveta Peschke and Mike Bryan. And Mirza felt it was this 6-2, 6-3 victory that laid the foundation for their title bid. “We probably played our best tennis in the quarter-final against No 2 seeds Kveta and Mike. But coming through in a Grand Slam final is very special indeed,” she signed off. 

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