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'I hope I can make it to Tokyo 2020,' Sania Mirza undergoes intense training session as she gears up for comeback

I hope I can make it to Tokyo 2020, Sania Mirza undergoes intense training session as she gears up for comeback
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Gearing up for a comeback, Sania Mirza was spotted undergoing an intense training session in Hyderabad on Sunday.

Gearing up for a comeback, Sania Mirza was spotted undergoing an intense training session in Hyderabad on Sunday.

India's ace tennis player, who has been out of action for over two years now after giving birth to son Izhaan, is eyeing to play at the Hobart International and the Australian Open in January.

Sania is known for her comebacks, especially after she turned tables around following a wrist injury that had threatened to end her career almost a decade ago. Although the injury had ended her singles career, Sania switched her focus solely to doubles game and since, she has gone on to become the best women's player from India.

The 33-year-old superstar from Hyderabad, who has so far won six Grand Slam titles, has admitted that she is excited and nervous ahead of her comeback. Sania is set to partner Ukraine's Nadiia Kichenok in the Hobart International and then she will team up with Rajeev Ram of US in the mixed doubles in the Australian Open next month.

"I could have easily hung up my boots and enjoyed my life. Instead of struggling to play the game for three hours under the sun like I did today," said Sania, who trained on Sunday with fellow compatriots Saketh Myneni, Prarthana Thombare and young talent G. Sai Karteek Reddy.

"But honestly, I am enjoying my grind even today and glad to put myself back in this kind of position and be able to compete - something to be very proud of. I love playing tennis. Frankly, I still felt that I have a lot more tennis left in me.

It was not a plan all along definitely as there are so many unknowns when you are blessed with a baby. Like how emotional you will be, how physically challenging it will be, how your body reacts," Sania added in her interview with Sportstar.

Former World No. 1 doubles player insisted that she never exactly knew her comeback's timeline because she needed time to see her son grow up. Now that Izhaan has begun to walk, she can leave him for about three hours and attend her training. Sania also added that she is still not sure till when she can go on to play now that she is a mother of a toddler.

"Passion for the sport is what drives me to a tennis court. And it is very important for me to give the right message always. You all know I always tried to do the right things and stand up for those. So, I feel like a woman and someone who is looked up it is my responsibility to set an example.

After achieving so much as an athlete, getting married, blessed with a boy, I wanted to show that you can still follow your dream. It doesn't make you a bad mother," Sania added.

Sania, who was ranked No. 12 when she last played in 2018, has admitted she is hoping to participate at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, which will mark her appearance in as many as four Olympics.

"Certainly, the Tokyo Olympics is at the back of my mind. And it will be great if I can make it as it would be my fourth Olympics. But, again that is not something which is my immediate goal. I have to see how my body reacts, behaves after match-play. So, the first target is to be healthy, not winning or losing," she said.

When asked if she will be under pressure ahead of her comeback after a gap of two years, Sania instantly said no. "It is just about getting into playing shape. So, I don't put any pressure on myself and repeat what comes is a bonus," Sania further said.

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