Won`t cut down on number of events to avoid injuries: Sania

New Delhi: A knee surgery cut short Sania Mirza`s 2011 season after the US Open but the Indian ace says she cannot afford to be selective about the events she competes in to avoid injuries.

Sania underwent a surgery on her left knee recently but has started practicing. Today was her sixth day on the courts, although she is not stretching her much, restricting the hitting sessions to 40-45 minutes.

"It`s good to be back on court. I am going slowly. I am fit but don`t want to rush things," Sania told PTI after working out in gym at DLTA complex.

Asked if she would consider cutting down on number of competitions in the next season, since injuries keep haunting her, Sania replied in negative.

"I cannot do that. The singles is like that only. We have to play week in and week out. If you want good ranking, you have to play and we have to deal with injuries on the way," she said.

"I wish I did not need this surgery but unfortunately I got injured after getting close to 60 in rankings. Perhaps needed a break."

Sania had suffered an injury in her right knee at the start of the year and then in left knee in August. Last season a wrist injury threatened her career but she came back strong and did well in the Commonwealth Games, winning silver in singles.

Sania is planning to get back to competitive tennis from January 1 when he plays a WTA event in Austin, New Zealand.

Sania won three WTA doubles titles -- two with Russian Elena Vesnina and one with Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakhstan this season.

She also reached her first ever women`s doubles Grand Slam final at French Open but could not win the title, losing the summit clash to Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka.

The Hyderabadi said reaching the final at Roland Garros would remain the memorable tournament of the season.

"Reaching that final would be highlight of the season. I wish we had won that but making the final itself is very satisfying."

In the singles, she improved her ranking from 166 to 87 but only once she could reach the quarter-final stage of a tournament in the entire season.

Reaching the last-eight at Charleston (US) was her best performance and she struggled to move beyond first and second rounds in most of the tournaments.

But Sania did not look concerned about her poor patch in the singles.

"Singles is very demanding. I played about 160 matches after coming back from that wrist injury when I struggled to even lift a tennis racquet. I managed to get to 60 in singles rankings after starting the year at 166, so it is okay. I am happy with it," Sania, who is currently 87th, said.

Sania, ranked 11th in the world in the doubles, said London Olympics is in her mind but the real preparation will start only after playing 20-25 tournaments in the 2012 season.


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