Indian sports icon Sania Mirza officially ended her professional tennis career this Tuesday, after a loss in the first round of doubles at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships.
We knew that the Dubai tournament would be the final stop in Mirza’s illustrious career. The former doubles world No.1 entered the event paired with American Madison Keys and their 6-4 6-0 loss in the first round to Veronika Kudermetova and Liudmila Samsonova marks the official end to the Indian’s 20 years spent on the WTA Tour.
The main reason for the 36-year-old’s retirement is that her body can’t take it any longer after two decades on the circuit and she’s emotionally drained from pushing her body to the limit.
Way back in April 2015, Mirza first reached the No.1 ranking in doubles and occupied that spot for a total of 91 weeks, finishing years 2015 and 2016 as the top-ranked doubles player. The Indian trailblazer is leaving the sport with 43 doubles titles to her name.
The large collection of doubles trophies includes 2015 Wimbledon, the 2015 US Open and the 2016 Australian Open, all won alongside Martina Hingis, the player with whom she pulled off a 41-match winning streak between the 2015 US Open and 2016 Doha. Additionally, Mirza won three mixed doubles titles at Grand Slams.
Besides her astonishing achievements in doubles tennis, Mirza was also a very successful singles player. She reached a career-high singles ranking of No.27 in 2007 and won a singles title at 2005 Hyderabad.