sania mirza
Chief national badminton coach Pullela Gopichand, tennis player Sania Mirza and badminton player PV Sindhu during the sendoff ceremony of Indian Contingent for Rio Olympics 2016, organised by Indian Olympic Association, in New Delhi on July 18, 2016.IANS

Women's tennis legend Serena Williams feels Indian veteran Sania Mirza can be successful with any partner in doubles tennis. Both the stars will be seen in action in the Rio Olympics 2016, beginning Friday.

The tennis events in the Olympics begin Saturday with Sania taking on Peng Shuai and Zhang Shuai in her women's doubles opener at the Olympic Tennis centre. The Indian ace is teaming up with Prarthana Thombare in the women's doubles competition, while in the mixed doubles competition, she teams up with Rohan Bopanna.

Serena, 34, a winner of four Olympic gold medals with Team USA in her illustrious career, will also be seen in action in the women's doubles event, alongside her sister Venus Williams, as well as in the women's singles competition.

A potential meeting between Sania-Prarthana and the Williams sisters in Rio 2016 therefore could be very likely. Sania, the current No 1 in women's doubles, alongside Swiss veteran Martina Hingis, has remained in stunning form in recent times as she bagged the Wimbledon 2015, US Open 2015 as well as the Australian Open 2016 crown with Hingis.

"Sania is a great doubles player and knows how to win Grand Slams," said Serena to the Times of India from Rio de Janeiro. "She was a wonderful singles player too. She can be successful with any partner and she will always do a wonderful job."

Serena and Sania have met in just one occasion so far on-court. They clashed at the Australian Open 2005 in the women's singles competition where the American overpowered the Indian in straight sets.