"Plan is to try, retire in Dubai": Sania Mirza aims to hang up the racquet on her own terms

Sports Saturday 07/January/2023 09:03 AM
"Plan is to try, retire in Dubai": Sania Mirza aims to hang up the racquet on her own terms

Dubai: Indian tennis star Sania Mirza announced that she will retire from the sport after next month's Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, a Women's Tennis Association (WTA) 1000 event.

She initially wanted to retire from the sport at the end of the previous season, but her elbow injury ruled her out of US Open and forced her to end 2022 as early as August. The six-time major champion, who has won three titles each in doubles and mixed doubles, will play alongside Kazakhstan's Anna Danilina in this year's Australian Open, which will start on January 16. Mirza, now 36, has been living in Dubai for more than a decade, will look forward to bow out of sport there, where she has represented India for many years in front of massive crowds.

"I was going to stop right after the WTA Finals, because we were going to make the WTA Finals, but I tore my tendon in my elbow right before US Open so I had to pull out of everything," Mirza was quoted as saying to wtatennis.com in Dubai.

"And honestly, the person that I am, I like to do things on my own terms. So I do not want to be forced out by injury. So I have been training."

Mirza has been struggling with a calf problem, that has lingered on, but has done little to stop her from pursuing the farewell that she wants, in her own way.

"The plan is to try and retire in Dubai during the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships," she said.

Mirza, a mother to a four-year-old boy, recently launched a tennis academy in Dubai. It already operates in three locations and in the coming weeks, will venture into two more neighbourhoods.

Mirza, who had a peak of number 27 in singles, will play her last tournament which will start from February 19 onwards. She has had achieved a peak of number one in doubles competition, becoming the first Indian to do so in 2015. In women's doubles competition, she has won Australian Open (2016), Wimbledon (2015), US Open (2015). She has also won Australian Open (2009), French Open (2012), US Open (2014) in the mixed doubles competition.