The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Singles still my priority: Sania

New Delhi: Having reached as far as the semi-finals of the French Open junior doubles, Sania Mirza is now concentrating her energies on Wimbledon later this month.

The 16-year-old Sania is definitely pleased with her show at Roland Garros but she knows she still has a lot of ground to cover, especially as far as singles are concerned.

“I am happy with the way I played in French Open. We reached the semis (in doubles), but I had a bad singles week,” Sania said on Sunday.

Sania and Sanaa Bhambri reaching a Grand Slam semi-finals was a significant achievement for the country’s junior tennis but the girl from Hyderabad has her feet firmly on the ground.

Sania, who lost in the first round in the singles event in Paris, was quick to point out that singles was still her main pririty.

“It is always good to play and win some doubles but my priority is still singles,” she said.

Sania and her teammates would next play two junior events in Germany before moving to Roehampton which is a tune-up for the Wimbledon junior championships.

The Frankfurt leg is a claycourt event while the next at Halle would be on grass. That and one more week at Roehampton should give the Indians ample time to adjust their game to the change in surface.

“Hard court is my favourite surface but I like grass more than clay,” said Sania.

Sania said she was unlucky to have fallen sick in Belgium, where she played a grade I junior event prior to the French Open.

She had high temperatures and could not practice in full swing. In fact, others in the Indian camp too suffered from various illnesses on their European sojourn.

“I was pretty unlucky that I fell sick on such an important tour but it was good that I was able to reach the second round at all (in Belgium),” she said.

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