Anybody who follows tennis in India will be well-acquainted with Sania Mirza. She is conceivably one of the country's most illustrious women sports personality. Sania is venerable not just for her on-field game but also for her looks and off-field life.
She was born in Mumbai, India on November 15, 1986. Her parents' names are Imran and Nassema Mirza. After Sania's delivery her family migrated to Hyderabad where she grew up. From the age of six she became passionate about tennis.
Her dad spotted her talent and started to coach her besides enrolling her with Roger Anderson. She went to Nasr a girl's school, and later to St. Mary's College. On December 11, 2008 MGR Educational and Research Institute University Chennai bestowed upon her their Doctor of Letters degree. Besides tennis she loves to swim.
Sania became a professional player in 2003. She has represented India several times and made her countrymen proud of her. Sania managed to clinch a bronze medal in 2002 Asian Games. She has also won 2003 Wimbledon Championships, 2003 Afro-Asian Games, AP Tourism Hyderabad Open, and much more.
In 2005 she became the WTA Newcomer of the Year. She has partnered with Mahesh Bhupathi and several others. In 2013, she retired from the singles due to a fatal wrist injury. In 2015 Sania became the first women who WTA placed at the number one position in doubles. She has brought laurels to the country innumerable times.
In 2009, she got engaged to Sohrab Mirza a businessman and a childhood friend but it didn't culminate in a marriage and the couple parted ways. A year later she married Shoaib Malik a cricketer playing for Pakistan. Her marriage made national headlines and even sparked a controversy due to the nation's relations with the neighboring country Pakistan.
Several citizens called her anti-national. Her clothes while playing tennis had also lead to national debate but the issue died soon after. She also had a tussle with the All India Tennis Association over her mixed partner. Sania is the recipient of Arjuna Award, Padma Shri, Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, and Padma Bhushan.
Sania is the brand ambassador of the newly formed state Telangana. She has also founded a tennis training academy in Hyderabad. United Nations appointed her as their Women Goodwill Ambassador for South Asia.
In 2010 The Economic Times mentioned her in their list of 33 women who made India proud and Sania featured in the list of 100 most influential people in the world in 2016 issue of Time magazine. Sania has written her autobiography titled Ace against Odds.