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WTA Future Stars Friday: Nepal

WTA Future Stars Friday: A series introducing you to the WTA Future Stars qualifiers. This week, we look at the qualifiers from Nepal, Ira Mehernissa Rawat and Mayanka Rana.

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Mayanka Rana (left) and Ira Mehernissa Rawat (right), U16 and U14 qualifiers from Nepal for the WTA Future Stars 2016 tournament.

Ira Mehernissa Rawat

Ira Mehernissa Rawat will be returning to the WTA Future Stars tournament, representing Nepal in the U14 category for the second time. Born in Jhapa, Nepal, Rawat holds the prestigious No. 1 rank for girls U14 in Nepal and has won the Armed Police Force National Open Championship too. She has represented Nepal in a few tournaments, including the South Asian Games and aims to become a professional tennis player.

The WTA Finals team had a Q&A with Rawat. Here’s what she said:

Who is your favorite WTA player and why?

My favorite WTA player is Maria Sharapova because she is a very patient and hardworking player.

What is the most interesting place you have visited and why?

Singapore because it is a beautiful place which I would like to visit a few times.

What do you love about playing tennis?

Tennis is a game which teaches you a lot of things that cannot be learnt elsewhere.

How and why did you start to play tennis?

My cousin inspired me to start playing tennis when I was 10 years old.

How do you feel about qualifying for WTA Future Stars and representing your country?

I feel very proud and happy to be given this opportunity.

What do you hope to learn about and experience while you participate in the WTA Finals in Singapore?

I hope to learn and experience something new and different.

 

Mayanka Rana

Mayanka Rana will be representing Nepal in the U16 category for the WTA Future Stars tournament. She is currently ranked No. 1 for the U16 category in Nepal and has a few wins under her belt too. Rana was the winner of the Citizens Bank Open Tennis Tournament in 2016 and the U18 Parent’s Cup Junior Tournament in 2015, to name a few. Just like Rawat, Rana aspires to become a professional tennis player.

The WTA Finals team had a Q&A with Rawat as well. Here’s what she said:

Who is your favorite WTA player and why?

My favorite WTA player is Serena Williams because I love the way she plays. She is a great person both on and off court.

What is the most interesting place you have visited and why?

Singapore definitely has to be the most interesting place I have visited because it is very clean and the people, places and food is wonderful.

What do you love about playing tennis?

Tennis is actually fun if you really want to play. It is my passion. You don’t just get to play tennis. You also get to make new friends and travel a lot.

How and why did you start to play tennis?
I started playing tennis because of my parents and my elder sister. They introduced me to this sport and have supported me since day one.

How do you feel about qualifying for WTA Future Stars and representing your country?

I feel very excited and lucky to qualify for the WTA Future Stars because it is such a good opportunity for me. It makes me feel very proud to be representing my country on such a big platform.

What do you hope to learn about and experience while you participate in the WTA Finals in Singapore?
I hope to meet and interact with the top WTA players of the world and learn a lot about tennis from them. I’m sure it is going to be an amazing experience.

Do you have any special stories to share?

I was nine when I first won a gold medal in tennis. After playing in the sun for nearly 3 hours against a really tough opponent, I finally won. I was so happy but I guess my father was happier. Tears of joy rolled down his cheeks and he smiled back at me. It was and will always be a special story for me.

 

 

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