It is the crack of dawn. We are at The Park Hotel in Hyderabad, gathered for a shoot. And most of us, bleary eyed, are still against the idea of a new day; she on the other hand is crackling with energy, raring to embrace the day. She walks in a little late. “I’ll get ready quick,” she says stoically walking towards the bedroom of the suite. Sania gets dressed radiantly in a red ensemble, which instinctively makes me reach out for my cell phone. And as we walk towards the poolside of the hotel onlookers stop by for a glance and try to click pictures. The sombre guard promptly steps in. He peremptorily instructs those on the sets, “Koi bhi photo nahi lega.” As she poses for our photo shoot, she vibes with our lens man with a confidence only the very assured exhibit.
Cut to her upmarket residence in town, as we sit across and she gets talking about this, that and the other and it is clear she is settled in. She coolly fields the volley of questions served at her and reciprocates with aces of her own. Sania has ridden the personal and professional humps with admirable cool. And she has surely and steadily moved on to better and bigger things in life. And it shows. From the start of her career she has been the subject of passionate speculations that actually don’t haunt her anymore.