A confident Sania Mirza has dismissed a 'China threat' in the Doha Asian Games by naming non-Chinese players as the favourites for women's singles crown in tennis but that has not gone down well with the state media.
"In singles, it's hard to say. There will probably be some unknown players coming up and there are some good Japanese girls out there. It's going to be a tough event and we have to be at our best," Sania was quoted as saying by the Xinua News Agency on Tuesday.
Since Chinese women players were no longer "unknown" with world number 21 Li Na, who is the top Asian player, leading their charge in Doha, along with 33rd ranked Zheng Jie and Yan Zi, the state media pointed out "the 20-year-old Sania has only won one Grand Slam singles match in 2006 and has made little impact elsewhere on the WTA Tour.
"Mirza had a patchy season in 2006 after breakthrough 2005 season highlighted by her first tour singles title, two Top 10 wins and US Open fourth round appearance," she added.