It was only earlier this month that ace tennis player, Sania Mirza, announced her retirement from the sport. At the recent Australian Open Mixed Doubles finals while she and Rohan Bopanna lost the game, she could not help but get teary-eyed as she reflected back on her career.

“My professional career started in Melbourne… I couldn’t think of a better arena to finish my [Grand Slam] career at” she said.

“It started in Melbourne in 2005, when I played Serena Williams in the third round here as an 18-year-old. And that was, scarily enough, 18 years ago. I have had the privilege to come back here again and again, win some tournaments here, and play some great finals amongst you all. It is Rod Laver Arena that has really been special in my life. I couldn’t think of a better arena to finish my career at, in a Grand Slam,” said the tennis star.

Also Read: Tennis Legend & Feminist Hero: 6 Times Sania Mirza Was An Icon For Women Everywhere

Here’s what people had to say about this emotional moment.

As a six-time Grand Slam winner, Sania Mirza has been an inspiration for young girls in the country. She fought scrutiny and criticism that mostly stemmed from her religious identity and stood tall. Her upcoming tournament at the WTA 1000 event in Dubai next month will be her final match.

Also Read: Sania Mirza, India’s Wonder Woman Who Fought Prejudices & Fatwas To Become A Champ In A Man’s World