In your excellence, world saw glimpse of India's sporting prowess: Modi to Sania
"In your excellence, the world saw a glimpse of India's sporting prowess," Prime Minister Narendra Modi told Sania Mirza while congratulating the legendry athlete for her glorious career in which she illustrated that "more women can pursue tennis and excel in it".
Sania, who won six Grand Slam titles in her career, bid adieu to the game last month in Dubai, where she played her final tournament.
In his congratulatory message to Sania, the PM conveyed that Sania has left an indelible mark on Indian sports, inspiring the coming generation of athletes.
Sania posted the letter, dated March 9, on her Twitter handle.
"Tennis lovers will find it difficult to fathom that you will not be playing professionally now onwards," wrote Modi.
".....In your excellence, the world saw a glimpse of India's sporting prowess. When you began playing, India's tennis landscape was very different. What you did was to illustrate that more women can pursue tennis and excel in it."
"But, beyond that, your success also gave strength to several other women who wanted to pursue a career in sports but for some reason or the other were hesitant to do so," wrote the PM.
Sania thanked the PM for the gesture.
"I would like to thank you Honorable Prime Minister @narendramodi Ji for such kind and inspiring words. I have always taken great pride in representing our country to the best of my ability and will continue to do whatever I can to make India proud. Thank you for your support," said Sania, formerly ranked world No.1 in doubles.
The PM wrote that Sania's success filled every Indians' heart with pride.
"When you announced a 'Life Update' on 13th January, you wonderfully expressed your journey from a six-year-old who had to literally fight her way to the (tennis) courts to a world class tennis player in the subsequent years. "You wrote about how the biggest honour for you has been to win medals for India. I can say that you are India's pride, whose success has filled hearts and minds of every Indian with utmost joy," Modi wrote.
The PM also recollected the time Sania went through a tumultuous phase, when a wrist injury almost jeopardised her career, before she emerged a strong double player.
"Due to twists of fate, you had to cope with injuries but these setbacks only strengthened your resolve and you overcame these challenges with flying colours."
Modi hoped Sania would continue mentoring young sports talent.
Sania was recently appointed mentor of Women's Premier League (WPL) side Royal Challengers Bangalore.