Sania Mirza will compete in the Tokyo Olympics once more. She is competing in the women’s doubles partnering Ankita Raina. However, no male tennis player will accompany them for the first time in Indian tennis history.
Yes, you read that correctly. For the first time since 1920, no male tennis player will represent India in the Olympics. Sania Mirza and Ankita Raina are the only players from India that will compete in the tennis event at the Olympics.
Sania Mirza is making her fourth appearance at the Summer Games, which is a record. In 2008, she took part in the Beijing edition for the first time. However, she was unable to make an impression and was eliminated in the first round of both the women’s singles and doubles competitions.
Sania did somewhat better in mixed doubles alongside Leander Paes at the 2012 London Olympics. However, they were defeated in the quarterfinals of the mixed doubles tournament by Victoria Azarenka and Max Mirnyi of Belarus.
Sania Mirza in Rio de Janeiro: So close, yet so remote
Sania Mirza at Rio Olympics – So Near, Yet So Far
Sania, on the other hand, came close to matching what Leander Paes had accomplished in Atlanta in 1996. She competed in the mixed doubles tournament alongside Rohan Bopanna, and the duo shocked everyone by storming into the semifinals.
In the semifinals, however, they were defeated by Venus Williams and Rajeev Ram of the United States. They eventually finished outside the top three after losing to Lucie Hradecka and Radek Stepanek of the Czech Republic. Sania had to withdraw after getting agonizingly close to a historic final.
So, will Sania be able to complete what was left unfinished in Rio? In what could be her final Olympic appearance, can she win a medal alongside Ankita?
Despite her lack of experience, Ankita Raina is capable of surprise the greatest on her day. The absence of the Williams sisters this time around would undoubtedly benefit the Indian duo, as their prospects of a podium finish would have been jeopardized otherwise.
Even now, Sania has the ability to knock it out of the park. It’s now up to her to see if she can go the distance in Tokyo.