Former doubles world number one Sania Mirza is aiming to return to the WTA Tour in late 2019, after missing out on competitions for more than a year. She gave birth to her son, Izhaan in October this year.
Mirza, in an interview with the Times of India, expressed how she is juggling her new responsibilities as a mother along with her efforts to get back in shape for the tour. She reiterated that her love for the sport is undying and is yearning to start playing tennis again.
At the same time, the 32-year-old also said that she is taking slow and steady steps towards her comeback. With two knee surgeries, it is imperative for her to get back to her ideal weight before she can hop on a full training regime.
“I’m a perfectionist, anything I do I want to do it properly. I would like to come back and compete at the level I competed at.”
The Indian veteran hasn’t played a tournament since late 2017, courtesy of a knee injury she picked up in October. She joined forces with Shuai Peng for her last couple of tournaments and made it to the semifinals at the US Open, WTA Wuhan, and Beijing Open before succumbing to the injury.
Owing to her knee problems, Mirza couldn’t participate in any event in 2018. It was then that she decided to make use of the time away from the courts and start a family.
When asked about her timeline to return to the WTA Tour, Mirza said that she is hoping to return in late 2019. In another interview in May earlier this year, the six-time Grand Slam doubles champion also mentioned that the 2020 Tokyo Olympics is on her mind and would like to be fit by then.
Mirza, as a mother, now stands to benefit from the new WTA rules geared towards making comeback easier for new mothers. As per the norms, she can use her special ranking for a period of three years.
Her last Grand Slam title came at the Australian Open in 2016 with her former partner Martina Hingis.