You read that right. Someone at New York Times thinks Sania Mirza is a superhuman. Or maybe they think that tennis and badminton are the same sport. Or perhaps they believe that one player can play both sports internationally.
However, a simpler explanation is NYT Live simply doesn’t know the difference between the two Indian sports women.
Which is why an article titled '11 stories of female athletes who made their own rules in 2015', on its website, lauded 'Badminton and tennis player Sania Mirza' as "one example of Indian women athletes excelling on the international stage".
The article goes on to elaborate how she is 'the first and only Olympic medal winner in badminton for India' and 'also won the Wimbledon's women's double Championship with Martina Hingis'.
The website later corrected the error saying "The athletes Sania Mirza and Saina Nehwal were misidentified in an earlier version of this article." ('misidentified' here would be an understatement, considering they mixed up both sports!) However, not before several people saved screenshots of the gaffe.
Just to reiterate, Sania and Saina are not merely Indian sportswomen, they both have been ranked No 1 in their respective sports. One is an Olympic winner, the other is a multiple Grand Slam Champion. And while their names may sound similar, their sports definitely are not.
Sadly, this isn’t the first time that an international news organisation has forgotten about Sania Mirza.
Back in September 2015, when Sania and her partner Martina Hingis won the US Open women's doubles, two of BBC's Twitter accounts chose to ignore both her and the fact that any doubles game requires two people.
Tweets from both the BBC and BBC Sports accounts said that "Hingis won the US open doubles titles" and "Hingis does it again." BBC Sport even carried a photograph of the two but didn't mention Sania's name. Even the headline of the article read "Martina Hingis wins fifth doubles title of year".
Hingis wins US Open doubles title http://t.co/rHCHBz18kZ
— BBC News (UK) (@BBCNews) September 13, 2015
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) September 13, 2015
What made it worse was the fact that this is the second time that a BBC Twitter account has failed to mention Sania Mirza's name.
After the Indo-Swiss pair's Wimbledon triumph in July, BBC India's account tweeted "Hingis wins Wimbledon doubles final". Considering that it was an India-focused entity's handle that missed Sania's name, BBC India received instant backlash,with even HRD Minister Smriti Irani pointing out the error. BBC India later deleted the tweet and posted a corrected version.
So New York Times, here's a question for the next time: Would you 'misidentify' a tainted cyclist with an astronaut?
First Published On : Jan 5, 2016 13:14 IST