I was marrying a person, not a Pakistani: Sania

I was marrying a person, not a Pakistani: Sania

‘It didn’t matter if he (Shoaib) was from Timbuktu. He could have been from anywhere,’ Sania said in Hyderabad on  Friday. AFP

“It didn’t matter if he (Shoaib) was from Timbuktu. He could have been from anywhere,” Sania said emphatically. “I was marrying a person, not a Pakistani; people try to make it political but we were very clear that we were two individuals who were getting married just like normal people,” she said.

“Everyone had an opinion, everyone wanted to have a say, but the most important thing is that now we are relieved as we are married,” she said.

Responding to a question, she made it clear she would continue supporting her homeland in future India-Pakistan encounters on the cricket field, but was quick to add that she would want her husband to hit a century.

Shoaib clarified that Sania would play only for India and she would have the good wishes of Pakistan.

When asked about the change in her life post-marriage, the tennis star said she’s clear about the fact that marriage is not going to change anything for her.

Sania maintains that tennis continues to be her focus. “My immediate goal is to play in the Commonwealth Games in India. I have played in the Asian Games before but this time it’s in India, so it’ll be more special for me; I am excited about it, I’m also going to play in Wimbledon,” she added.

On the controversy generated after Ayesha Siddiqui charged that Shoaib had married her, Sania said: “It was lot of emotions.” The hardest part for me was to go out in the media, a week before marriage, and to give clarifications for whatever good, bad or ugly. That is not what a bride wants to do a week before her marriage.” The newly weds also described how and where they met, and the toll their controversial wedding had taken on them. Shoaib said they met “in 2004 for two minutes.”

Sania said she had met Shoaib for the first time in 2004, but the meeting lasted for only two minutes at a restaurant in Hobartin in Australia. “We were staying in the same hotel. I was on my way to the gym and we met there,” Sania said.

The very next day, Shoaib along with former fast bowler Waqar Younis, came to watch her match where she found Malik “very simple” and “attractive”. They said they met again in Dubai. “It was actually love at third sight,” Sania said

When asked whether she thought during the controversy that the marriage may not take place, Sania said: “I never thought we will not get married. At the end of the day, we are human beings. It takes a lot out of you.”

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