ED brings you a brand new ED Original Series: When Even Winners Faced Defeat, where you get a lesser known narrative of inspirational people and the setbacks that came along their path.

So the next time you think that subject you didn’t get good marks in, or that person who didn’t like your picture on Facebook, and want to give up on life. Then just take a look at these people who even after experiencing crushing defeats, came out as winners. Use it as your motivation, as your determination, because success does not come easy.

When asked ‘when she is going to settle down’ and what life ‘beyond tennis’ is going to be like for her seeing how she doesn’t talk about motherhood and building a family, Sania Mirza poignantly pointed out,

You sound disappointed that I’m not choosing motherhood over being number one…that’s the question I face all the time as a woman; that all women have to face — the first is marriage and then it is motherhood. Unfortunately, that’s when we’re settled, and no matter how many Wimbledons we win or number ones in the world we become, we don’t become settled.”

And that’s all you really need to know to love her, honestly.

A champion on and off the tennis court, Sania Mirza – a Padma Bhushan awardee, named as one of the “100 Most Influential People in the World” by Times, and ranked No. 1 in doubles by WTA in 2015 – is a force to be reckoned with.

But success and hardships often go hand in hand, and Sania Mirza is no exception.

Let’s look at some of the obstacles she has successfully surpassed over the years.

1. If Sania had listened to her coach, she might have never become the champion we all know and love her to be

Sania Mirza, from a very young age, had shown an interest in tennis, and when she was barely 6 years old, she was taken to a coach, who was reluctant to take her in at first because she was “too small” for her age. But, within a month, he recognized the raw talent she possessed for the game and helped her grow as a player.

If you know you’re good at something, make sure you go after it with every ounce of passion you possess. And never listen to people who try to limit you or pull you back.

“ कुछ तो लोग कहेंगे, लोगों का काम है कहना “

Also Read: When Even Winners Faced Defeat: Mckinsey’s Rajat Gupta’s Story

2. She didn’t let a severe wrist injury deter her from attaining her goal

She stands by the importance of hard work in life and to this day sets a challenging regime for herself to improve and maintain her game. Now more than ever, owing to a wrist injury that drove her to a point where her career was almost over.

She had to resign from the singles tournament at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and was unable to play the US Open that same year. Mirza’s struggle with injury grew stronger in 2010, when she was unable to win in any tournament. Another career-threatening wrist injury in 2012, forced her to permanently shift her full attention to doubles.

Despite the physical limitations, she put in the work and was crowned as No. 1 by WTA in 2015.

There will always be obstacles in your path to success. You either surpass them or find an alternative route. The only thing you can’t do is give up.

3. She doesn’t let insignificant people and their offensive remarks affect her game or her life

The resilience she exhibits is partly an inherent trait and partly something that she has had to cultivate over the years in order to deal with pig-ignorant critics belittling her achievements, time and time again.

Since her marriage to Shoaib Malik, she has had to tolerate racist, sexist and fascist remarks, time and time again. When it was announced that she would be appointed as the official Brand Ambassador for Telangana, there was relentless hue and cry about how she was “unfit” to be the representative of an Indian state, seeing as she was “Pakistan’s daughter-in-law”.

And yet, she persevered. She brushed off the comments. She moved on. She did her job. She played her game. And she won. The game and At Life.

Ask her what she does on her off days, pat comes the reply, “Off day? What is that? I don’t have off days.” She recognizes that there are no shortcuts to becoming No. 1 in the world.

She is an icon. A superstar. A champion.

You try to bring her down with your relentless sexist nonsense and you’ll see nothing but her laughing face as she accepts her trophy and medal for winning yet another match.

Image Credits: Google Images

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