Ace tennis player Sania Mirza is currently in Doha to participate in the ongoing Qatar Total Open tournament. Though the 30-year-old is quite vocal when it comes to expressing her views, she could not talk to media or give her interview in the recent past due to her busy schedule. Her very recent interview to Al Jazeera however was quite a detailed one in which she candidly spoke about various issues including her career, personality and a host of other social issues.
In the middle of this interview, the journalist hurled a question on why Muslim women don’t play tennis. Stunned by the question, the athlete said religion has nothing to do with it. Be it Muslim or non-Muslim girls, most of the women don’t play this particular game. It’s more a cultural problem in India. Every young girl is taught about what she could do and she couldn’t since her childhood.
Sania also said that Gender Inequality is particularly a big issue in South Asia. Sania believes that as a girl, one has to compromise on a lot of things that boys don’t need to. She said it’s a man’s world and unless gender parity becomes a reality everywhere the problem won’t get solved. The fabulous athlete is currently working as an UN Ambassador for gender equality in South Asia.
Sania Mirza talks about on her possible Bollywood debut in autobiography
In her latest interview, Sania admitted that she might actually appear in a Bollywood movie based on her life. The talk about Sania’s possible appearance on a Bollywood sport-centric film is getting a lot of buzz ever since the release of her autobiography, Aces Against Odds in June 2016.
“There are some talks going on, but there’s nothing concrete right now,” the 30-year-old remarked in the same interview while adding that she is a private person, and won’t open her up completely over this proposed celluloid venture.
Talking about her book, Sania said she took almost eight years to finish the book because she had so much to write about. “Things just kept happening and there were so many achievements on and off the court that I had to mention”, Sania said. She pointed it out that the main reason behind writing her autobiography was to induce and inspire the young girls of this tradition-bound country to try and pick up a tennis racket as a player and achieve their goals.
Why Sania bats for Sports-Centric Bollywood films?
Asked about the plight of other sports in India, Sania Mirza quoted as saying, “We try to act like we are a sporting nation two months before the Olympics, Asian Games or Commonwealth Games. Until then, nobody really cares. We need to remember that we have champions outside of cricket, as well. Most sports don’t get the kind of support, help or viewership that is given to cricket. But because of movies, the whole country realizes who these people are. Bollywood is probably the biggest industry that we have. It’s one way to reach out to the masses and, actually, celebrate.”
No doubt, in the last few years, sports centric movies have created lots of positive buzz for the athletes and games alike. Be it Shahrukh Khan’s Chak de India, Priyanka Chopra-Starred Mary Kom, Farhan Akhtar’s Bhaag Milkha Bhaag or even the recent biopic on Dhoni, “M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story”, Bollywood films have their own relevance when it comes to popularizing a sport or even depicting the gruesome tales of athletes fighting against all odds to fulfill the dream of playing for the nation. It is because of these movies the whole country realizes who these people are.
What’s next for Sania Mirza?
The star athlete is currently vying for becoming numero uno in the world WTA (Women’s Tennis Association) ranking. “We’re trying to win every tournament, whether it’s a Grand Slam or a regular tournament. It would be great to get back to number one in the world; I was there for almost two years. I feel like I just want to keep working hard and playing as long as I enjoy the pressure of competing,” she added.
The six times Grand Slam title winner also added that she plays for the love of the game. The recently launched Sania Mirza Tennis Academy in Telengana is all set to enhance the interest of young girls in Tennis at grass root level.
Currently, India doesn’t have any other names to fill the void in the area of women’s tennis other than Sania. She is hopeful that such initiatives will create more quality Indian tennis players. She is also satisfied with the latest sports infrastructure in the country. There was a time when India used rudimentary form of tennis court using cow dung but now India hosts WTA tournaments – it’s a positive development. Sania concluded the interview by saying that she wants to be remembered as someone who tried to fight for the right things on and off the court.