Happy Birthday, Sania Mirza: All The Milestones In The Tennis Ace's Life
Sania Mirza’s name is synonymous with tennis in India. Every time the legendary player has entered the tennis court with a racket in hand, she has displayed a great show and created innumerable milestones.Mirza has six Grand Slam titles to her name, and is a former World No. 1 in the doubles ranking. As she rings in her 32nd birthday today, here's a look at some of the milestones in her career so far.
First Wimbledon Championship
Mirza held a tennis racket for the first time at the age of six, and started playing professionally in February 2003.The Hyderabadi played bagged her first women’s doubles Grand Slam Wimbledon title in the same year with Russian player Alisa Kleybanova. Mirza made history by becoming the first Indian woman to win a Grand Slam title. Since then, she was the highest ranked Indian women’s player till 2013.
The 2004 Arjuna Award
Following the Grand Slam victory, Mirza became the first woman to win the Women’s Tennis Association title in 2004. In the same year, she was honoured with the Arjuna Award.In 2005, she was awarded the ‘Best Newcomer Of The Year’ award by Women’s Tennis Association.
Mirza began her career playing singles, and later went on to focus more on the doubles segment.In 2009, she played with Mahesh Bhupathi in the mixed doubles segment at the Australian Open and bagged the Grand Slam title. Mirza was also the first woman tennis player to earn US $1 million as prize money.
Victory In 2015
In 2015, Mirza bagged her first Wimbledon women doubles’ title partnering with Swiss player Martina Hingis.She also became the second tennis player after Leander Paes to be conferred with the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award 2015.
The 'Santina' Storm
Mirza was the first Indian woman to win the Women’s Doubles Grand Slam in April 2015. This year was when she partnered with Martina Hingis for the first time. Mirza and Hingis were known as one of the greatest women's doubles pair. The two were popularly known as 'Santina'.
They bagged 14 titles together including three, consecutive Grand Slam titles.
Santina won the Wimbledon and US Open in 2015 and the third Grand Slam in February 2016.
However, 16 months from then, in July 2016, the two discontinued their partnership.