Wimbledon: Sania Mirza to face-off Ankita Raina before Olympics — Preview, when and where to watch, LIVE streaming
Sania Mirza will team up with familiar partner and tennis ace Rohan Bopanna in the Mixed Doubles at the Wimbledon Championships to spar off against the youngster duo of Ankita Raina and Ramkumar Ramanathan.
It's a great time for Indian tennis as the main draws of the Grand Slams are once again being frequented by a fair share of Indian veterans and new faces. In what is expected to be a blockbuster clash, former World No. 1 in women's doubles Sania Mirza will team up with familiar partner and tennis ace Rohan Bopanna in the Mixed Doubles at the Wimbledon Championships to spar off against the youngster duo of Ankita Raina and Ramkumar Ramanathan in the opening round.
Sania Mirza and Ankita Raina to face-off before pairing up for Tokyo Olympics
6-time Grand Slam champion, Sania Mirza was actively away from the tennis courts after taking a maternity leave in 2018 to give birth to her son, Izhaan. However, the 34-year-old tennis superstar is slowly scripting her comeback and made a winning start at her first Wimbledon as a mother, as she cruised into the second round of the women's doubles with partner Bethanie Mattek-Sands, 7-5, 6-3.
Exhibiting fine shape and form – Sania Mirza looked like she hadn't been away from the court much as her service games spoke for themselves. Pairing up with Rohan Bopanna, her partner at the 2016 Rio Olympics - where the duo even went till the semi-finals, Sania Mirza and Rohan Bopanna will be eager to work their magic and bring their experience to the forefront.
On the other side of the net, for the first time in Wimbledon history – an all-Indian pair will be waiting for them. The India No. 1 in women's singles and doubles, Ankita Raina will ally with Ramkumar Ramanathan and get ready to lock horns with the veteran duo of Mirza-Bopanna.
The intensity of this match is expected to be high-octane, especially because Sania Mirza, who is heading for her fourth straight Olympics at Tokyo will be on the opposite side on the net while her Tokyo Olympics women's doubles partner, Ankita Raina, will be on the other side. Expect fireworks to sizzle as the all-Indian clash takes place on the Wimbledon greens.
What lies at stake is a lot of history too – while Sania Mirza and Rohan Bopanna will look forward to overpowering the Raina-Ramanathan duo, Raina will be trying to notch her first main draw victory at the Grand Slam stage. Before heading to Tokyo to debut at the Olympics as the partner of Sania Mirza, Gujarat's Ankita Raina will have to know how to tackle her talented partner well from across the net - instead of by her side.
Wimbledon is known for its fair share of drama but it has been a while since an all-Indian clash like this has happened at the Grand Slam stage. Taking place especially in the lead-up to the Tokyo Games, the Mirza-Raina face-off will be a huge point of interest and reveal the strong points of both the players as opponents and expose their potential as partners at the upcoming Olympics.
However, neither Sania nor Ankita are unfamiliar with the game of the other as Sania has played the Fed Cup ties with Raina and together, they boast of a 5-0 winning streak. It will be very exciting to see who finally triumphs – the young guns or the seasoned players, but at the end of the day, clashes like this on the stage of Wimbledon – the oldest existing Grand Slam in the world – is ultimately the win for Indian tennis.
Where to watch the match/LIVE streaming
The Wimbledon Championships taking place in London, Great Britain will be telecasted on Star Sports and can be live-streamed on Disney+ Hotstar VIP.
When to watch the match?
The first-round match between Sania Mirza - Rohan Bopanna and Ankita Raina - Ramkumar Ramanathan will take place on Court 8 and won't begin before 4:50 PM IST.