Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Sania's Aus tour ends

Indian icon Sania Mirza crashed out of theAustralian Open Wednesday but said she was just happy to be back after a painful six months on the sidelines.

Her 6-3, 6-2 loss to Russian 10th seed Nadia Petrova was only her second match back and even winning once here was good enough for Mirza, who shoulders the hopes and expectations of a sports-mad nation.

But the 22-year-old vowed to bounce back as she works to once again to match her career-high of 27 after recovering from a serious wrist injury.

"I'm just happy to be back and doing what I love doing, playing tennis and competing," she said.

"There was a big crowd out there and I haven't played like that for six months.

"Of course I'm disappointed at losing but I will try and take positives from this.

"I will try and get into the top 30, of course, but the last five or six months have taught me to live for the moment so I don't want to get ahead of myself."

On her game against Petrova, she conceded she was simply outclassed by a better player.

"When you're playing the world number 10 you expect her to raise her game under pressure and that is exactly what she did," she said of her opponent.

"I was a break up and I played a decent match but I still have a lot to work on.

"There are no excuses. I could blame it on a lack of match practice time, or on playing the world number 10. I had a sore stomach as well," she added.

"But at the end of the day I have to give her credit."

Mirza is a idol to many young women in India but controversy has never been far away.

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