These starlets have displayed consecutive performances in the recent past.
At the recently concluded Tokyo Olympics, only the women’s doubles pair of Sania Mirza and Ankita Raina managed to qualify for the event in the women’s category. Unfortunately, they were knocked out in the first round itself. The last few years have been quite a struggle for Indian tennis.
Moreover, there exists a shadow of uncertainty when it comes to the upcoming talent in women’s tennis in India. Sania Mirza has been the most successful women’s singles player for India. While her glorified career has shifted to doubles now, the search for India’s next women’s singles player is on the rise. In terms of their WTA rankings, let’s take a look at the upcoming women’s singles players in India after Sania Mirza and Ankita Raina.
5. Riya Bhatia
Following Ankita Raina (190), Riya Bhatia (382) is the second highest women’s singles player on the WTA ranking list. The 23-year-old from New Delhi has won a couple of titles in both singles and doubles on the ITF circuit. She was also a part of the Indian Fed Cup team for three seasons. The right-handed player also holds two National titles to her name and is currently the second highest-ranked player in India as per the latest AITA rankings.
4. Karman Kaur Thandi
Karman Kaur Thandi is another upcoming women’s singles player of India. She is currently ranked 518 in the WTA ranking list with her career-high rank being 196 in singles. Hailing from New Delhi, Harman started playing tennis at the age of 7. Eventually, she got her first International break when she won the 2014 edition of the WTA Future Stars.
The 23-year-old has won four doubles and one singles title on the ITF circuit and has also been representing India at the Fed Cup since 2017. Backed by the Virat Kohli Foundation and Mahesh Bhupathi, she had also participated in the 2018 Asian Games. She has the potential to become the next singles star in Indian tennis after Sania Mirza.
3. Zeel Desai
One of the most successful Indian women on the junior circuit, Zeel Desai has now entered the senior circuit of International tennis. Notably, she is the second Indian player after Sania Mirza to win atleast 10 ITF junior titles. Moreover, in the Commonwealth Youth Games, she won the girls’ singles and mixed doubles titles.
The 22-year-old from Ahmedabad, Gujarat is currently ranked 615 on the WTA ranking list. Furthermore, she is the fifth-highest women’s singles player in India as per the recent AITA ranking list. She has played a couple of ITF tournaments and holds one singles and four doubles titles to her name.
2. Reshma Maruri
Maruri is the no. 1 ranked player in India U-18 and is ranked 289 as per the recent ITF Junior rankings. The 18-year-old from Karnataka has won two ITF titles till now in J4 Hyderabad 2021 and J5 Indore 2020. Currently training under India’s Davis Cup coach, Zeeshan Ali, she partners with her sister Suhitha Maruri in women’s doubles. In several interviews, her coach has often compared her to Sania Mirza. The youngster is one of the most prolific upcoming women’s players in Indian Tennis.
1. Vipasha Mehra
Mehra is the highest-ranked Indian player in the World Junior rankings. The 19-year-old is currently ranked 134 in the junior circuit. Her tennis journey began in Qatar although she was born in India, as her parents decided to shift there. She returned to India in 2018 and resided in Pune. Notably, she holds three ITF titles in J4 Lome (2019), J4 Harare (2019) – where she won both the singles and doubles categories. She was the only Indian woman to qualify for the 2020 Australian Open Juniors but had to unfortunately retire for health concerns.
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