Sania Mirza and Caroline Garcia sail through to the pre-quarterfinals of Dubai Open doubles

  • Sania Mirza and partner Caroline Garcia make winning start at the Dubai Open Championships
Kartik Iyer
Modified 19 Feb 2020, 11:15 IST

Sania Mirza on court
Sania Mirza on court

What's the story?

Indian tennis star Sania Mirza and her partner Caroline Garcia from France advanced to the pre-quarterfinals of the women's doubles event at the Dubai Open Tennis Championships.

In case you didn't know

Sania Mirza, the Indian tennis ace, is on a comeback trail after having spent more than two years away from the professional circuit originally due to injury and then on maternity leave. The possibility of winning a till now elusive medal at the Tokyo Olympics 2020 has inspired her comeback.

Mirza, in partnership with Martina Hingis, had reached the pinnacle in the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) Doubles World rankings in 2015. After splitting with Hingis as a pair, she played with multiple partners but could not reproduce the same results. Despite that, she was one of the top women's doubles players before her lay-off.

She returned to professional tennis earlier this year at the Hobart International and proved that she was still a force to be reckoned with by going on to claim the title along with her partner Nadiia Kichenok. Unfortunately, she suffered a calf injury on the way to the title. This injury hampered her at the Australian Open, the year's first Grand Slam, as she had to retire mid-way through her women's doubles first round match and withdraw from the mixed doubles event as well.

The heart of the matter

Having recovered from the right calf injury she had suffered, Mirza has made a successful comeback at the Dubai Open Tennis Championship. The Indian ace along with her partner Caroline Garcia from France registered a hard-fought win over Russia’s Alla Kudryavtseva and Slovenia’s Katarina Srebotnik to advance to the women’s doubles pre-quarterfinals.

The Indo-French pair beat their opponents 6-4, 4-6, 10-8 in their first round encounter. It was a tough match as they lost the 2nd set after having won the first set and had to win a hard-fought super tie-breaker in the final set to go through to the pre-quarterfinals.

The Sania-Carolina pair will now face the fifth seeded duo of Saisai Zheng of China and Barbora Krejcikova of Czech Republic in the round of 16.

What's next?

Mirza would hope that this winning comeback continues and she goes on to claim the Dubai Open doubles title. Her form and fitness would be very crucial this year as she hopes to bag the all-important Olympic Medal that she and Rohan Bopanna were so close to winning at the Rio Olympics.

Published 19 Feb 2020, 11:15 IST
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