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Suspense continues over Paes' participation in Olympics

sports Updated: Jun 22, 2012 18:53 IST
Ajay Maken

Suspense over participation of Leander Paes in the London Olympics persisted on Friday with the country's number one ranked player yet to confirm that he would do so even as AITA was making efforts to persuade him.

After being available to the media for the past several days, Paes was incommunicado and has not directly said a word since All India Tennis Association (AITA) announced yesterday that he would be paired with 206th ranked Vishnu Vardhan in the men's doubles contrary to his wishes.

AITA has deputed one of its selectors Rohit Rajpal to London where he will meet Paes in a bid to persuade him.

The father of the tennis player hockey Olympian Dr Vece Paes had last night indicated that Paes might not accept the pairing.

The senior Paes had said that Leander was disappointed with the decision as it was very unfair on him and it was difficult to say which way he will go.

Paes has been paired with Sania Mirza in the mixed doubles event and there were reports that he wanted a written assurance that Sania would play with him.

Under the compromise announced by AITA yesterday, Paes will participate in two events while Mahesh Bhupathi, with whom he had bitter exchanges in the past few weeks, got his wish to play alongside Rohan Bopanna in the doubles.

Paes, ranked number seven in doubles, is the only Indian in the top-10, thereby having a privilege to choose a partner of his choice.