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    Dec 2009

    Default Stars' absence won't affect CWG tennis: Sania

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    The game of tennis has "enough depth" to negate the absence of star players when the sport makes its debut at the Commonwealth Games, feels India's star player Sania Mirza.
    It would have been a treat for home fans had world No.4 Andy Murray, former world No. 1 Lleyton Hewitt, French Open finalist Smantha Stosur and Cyprus' Marcos Bhagdatis, who recently stunned Rafael Nadal, not pulled out of the Games.
    The Games are clashing with prestigious season-ending ranking events on the two professional Tours, forcing players to decide against playing in the Games.

    Sania, who has been India's face on the WTA circuit in last half-a-decade, feels star-factor or rankings doesn't count much when one is on court.
    "As a tennis player, one can only compete with the players who are on the other side of the net! However, I can assure you that at least in a global sport like tennis, the depth is tremendous and stardom or rankings have no bearing once a player enters the court," Sania said.
    India's men's squad is packed with legends such as Leander Paes and rising stars in Somev Devvarman but the women's squad wears a complete contrast look.
    AITA had to recall 33-year-old Nirupama Sanjeev for the Games and apart from Sania and Nirupama, another veteran Rushmi Chakravarthy (513) and youngster Poojashree Venkatesh (444) comprise the four-member women's team.

    "It is a great achievement for Niru to be still good enough to get into the team. However, it is disappointing that the cupboard of upcoming talent in Indian women's tennis looks bare," Sania said.
    ...being a human...



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