Sania Mirza to hang up her boots after 2022 season end, feels 'body is wearing down, energy isn't same'

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Updated: Jan 19, 2022, 03:28 PM(IST)

File photo of Sania Mirza. Photograph:( Zee News Network )

Story highlights

Sania and her Ukrainian partner Nadiia Kichenok were outclassed by 4-6, 6-7 against Tamara Zidansek and Kaja Juvan in the women's doubles category. The match lasted for only one hour and 37 minutes under challenging conditions. After the clash, she stunned one and all with her retirement plans.

Sania Mirza shocked the sporting fraternity after announcing that she is planning to hang her boots after the end of the 2022 season. The 35-year-old made the announcement following her first-round defeat in women's doubles in the ongoing 2022 Australian Open edition, in Melbourne.

Sania and her Ukrainian partner Nadiia Kichenok were outclassed by 4-6, 6-7 against Tamara Zidansek and Kaja Juvan. The match lasted for only one hour and 37 minutes under challenging conditions after which Sania made her retirement plans known to one and all. 

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Following her crushing defeat, Sania told on Wednesday (January 19) on Court 5 at Melbourne Park, "There's a few reasons for it. It's not as simple as 'okay I'm not going to play'. I do feel my recovery is taking longer, I'm putting my 3-year-old son at risk by travelling so much with him, that's something I have to take into account. I think my body is wearing down. My knee was really hurting today and I'm not saying that's the reason we lost but I do think that it is taking time to recover as I'm getting older."

She added, "Also for me to find that motivation everyday to come out. The energy is not the same anymore. There are more days than there used to be where I don't feel like doing that. I've always said that I will play until I enjoy that grind, the process which I'm not sure I'm enjoying as much anymore."

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Sania also stated that her decision was made by the end of the last calendar year.

"I was very sure that this was going to be my last season when I started the year or even in December. Just the way my body is playing, I don't think I can finish the season. I want to play the full season, I'm still 50-60 in the world, I played nine tournaments last year. I do think I have the level to play, it's not about that. As an athlete, I think I can go deep into tournaments," Sania explained.

For the unversed, Sania remains a big name in Indian tennis and has carried forward the legacy created by Leander Paes, Mahesh Bhupathi, etc. The female superstar is ranked 68th in the world and is also a former World No. 1 in doubles. Her career-best ranking in singles is 27.

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