Sania Mirza is now all set to start her own tennis academy in Hyderabad, where “youngsters will get quality training at an affordable price”.
The academy is under construction near the outskirts of the city ands is expected to be launched in March next year.
“I had been thinking about it for past few years now. I always wanted to give something back to sport and to India in whatever way. Sharing experience and trying to provide players a platform to perform at the highest level is the best way to give something back to the game,” Sania told PTI during an interview.
“Hopefully, if not in the next 5 years, may be in 10 years, 12 years, we will have players coming out of that academy,” she added.
The academy is being constructed on a four acre land and will have nine hard courts to start with. Gradually, there will be nine more hard courts along with three clay courts.
Sania’s father Imran Mirza, who is writing a book on the journey of her star daughter, informed that they are planning to rope in a few sponsors so that the trainees at the academy find it easy to train.
“We want to make it affordable for them,” he said.
‘It’s been a great year’
Talking about the season, nearing end, Sania said she was satisfied with her performance.
“It’s been great. As tennis players you are never satisfied. We are greedy as players, always want better result. I played six finals, won a Grand Slam and made the final of China open which is the biggest tournament after Grand Slam. So, it’s been a great year,” she said.
“I achieved my best ranking this year (No 7 in doubles) and next year, I would like to better that.”
Sania had to change a lot of doubles partners this year due to various reasons. She played with Russian Elena Vesnina, American Bethanie Mattek Sands, Australian Anastasia Rodionova, Yaroslav Shvedova and now with Spanish Nuria Llagostera Vives.
Asked about her choice of doubles partner in 2013 season, Sania said it would depend on whether she plays singles or not.
“It depends whether I play singles or not. Things will be clear when I stop and take some time off. I am talking to a few players. Still a couple of months away. At Moscow, we will sit down and with a clear mind take a decision,” she said.
The news of her pairing with American doubles great Bob Bryan has been there for some time but India’s No 1 player refused to comment on the possible pairing.