‘If I cry, these are happy tears’: Sania Mirza breaks down as she ends her glorious Grand Slam career

Star Indian tennis player Sania Mirza and her partner Rohan Bopanna suffered a heartbreaking defeat in the Australian Open mixed doubles final on Friday (January 27). The Indian pair were defeated 6-7, 2-6 by the Brazilian pair of Luisa Stefani and Rafael Matos. Sania was playing in her final match of the Grand Slam tournament, but unfortunately, she was unable to secure her second mixed doubles title at the iconic Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne.

The 36-year-old had already declared that she would be retiring from her nearly two-decade-long professional career next month in Dubai, and that the ongoing Australian Open would be her final major tournament. Despite being tantalizingly close to claiming the mixed doubles title in Melbourne for the first time since 2009, Mirza ultimately fell short.

The Indian tennis legend has fond memories of playing at the Australian Open, and after losing the final, she fondly recalled them all, remarking that the Rod Laver Arena had been a special part of her life. She reminisced about the electrifying atmosphere, the passionate crowds, and the thrilling matches that she had experienced there. She said that the Australian Open had been a defining moment in her career, and that she would always cherish the memories she had made there.

“I am still planning to compete in a few more tournaments. But my professional journey began in Melbourne in 2005, when I faced Serena Williams in the third round as an eighteen-year-old – a daunting experience at the time. I have been fortunate enough to return here multiple times, winning some tournaments and playing in some incredible finals. Rod Laver Arena has been a special part of my life, and I can’t think of a better place to end my Grand Slam career. Thank you all for making me feel so welcome here,” Saina said, her voice trembling with emotion as she fought back tears.

Apart from claiming the Mixed Doubles title in 2009, Sania Mirza achieved another major milestone in 2016 when she and Swiss tennis legend Martina Hingis won the Women’s Doubles Australian Open title. In her illustrious career, Sania has earned a total of six Grand Slam titles, three of which were in Women’s Doubles and the other three in Mixed Doubles.

READ| Australia Open: Sania Mirza ends Grand Slam career with straight set loss in mixed doubles final

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