Depressing to skip Sunfeast, but its body's call over mind: Sania

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Kolkata, Sep 18 (UNI) Having pulled out of the Sunfeast Open yesterday, Sania Mirza today said it was a depressing decision, but sometimes one had to listen to the body over the mind.

''But I would rather not stay away from the court for three months like I had to after my knee surgery. After that surgery I was depressed for weeks. These are tough decisions, but at times you have to listen to your body rather than your heart,'' she said.

''Injuries will happen to sportspersons. After all, we are defying nature everyday. So good injury management and rehabilitation is important,'' she added.

Sania will be out of action for at least two weeks because of the wrist injury. Sania said, ''I was really looking forward to participating in Sunfeast Open 2007. I am very upset that this injury is keeping me away from the courts. My fans have always been very supportive and I was keen to perform well in Kolkata.

I wish all the players, especially the Indian compatriots, a great and exciting tournament.'' WTA Tour Supervisor for the Sunfeast Open Fabrice Choquet added, ''Sania is out with a wrist injury that has plagued her since the US Open. She will also miss the Hansol Korea Open next week.'' ''If she recovers in time she will play the Tokyo Open that starts in two week's time,'' she said.

Lucky loser Indonesian Sandy Gumuliya replaced Sania Mirza and will now play Sunitha Rao in the first round tie.

In a joint press conference with Sachin Tendulkar, who is in the city for a promotional event for the Sunfeast Open, she said that she admired Tendulkar for the way he handled pressure.

Tendulkar, on his part, said with Sania, Indian tennis is now like an ongoing movie, an obvious reference to Chak de India which has caught the imagination of millions of sports lovers.

Sania, who loves cricket, had grown up admiring Tendulkar and she admitted as much today. She has heroes in her chosen sport too, and there Roger Federer tops the charts.

''He is a perfectionist and I think that is a difficult thing for a sportsman to be,'' she said.

Talking about the depth in women's tennis today, she said, ''Rankings don't really matter. It's just a number. Anyone can beat anyone today. Such is the depth in women's tennis today.'' Asked whether it was necessary to have the 'glam factor' to succeed, she said, ''No, that's not true. But if you have it, it's a bonus. Otherwise, you let your racquet do the talking.'' On keeping up to the expectations, she said, ''Playing for India is not easy. It takes a lot of hard work. One has to deal with praise as well as criticism. One has to block all that and do what is needed. It is all about keeping the Tricolour flying.'' UNI

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