Mahesh Bhupathi picks Rohan Bopanna, dumps Leander Paes for Davis Cup tie
Mahesh Bhupathi is India’s non-playing Davis Cup captain. The former world doubles No. 1 has picked the younger Rohan Bopanna ahead of veteran star Leander Paes for the doubles rubber against Uzbekistantennis Updated: Apr 06, 2017 19:02 IST
Davis Cup non-playing captain Mahesh Bhupathi made the decision to field Rohan Bopanna rather than Leander Paes for India’s upcoming Davis Cup tie against Uzbekistan.
The decision was announced on Thursday, just two days after Mahesh Bhupathi addressed the media saying that the doubles combination had not yet been finalised.
Mahesh Bhupathi, once the world No. 1 in doubles with Leander Paes, had previously finalised Yuki Bhambri, Ramkumar Ramanathan, Prajnesh Gunneswaran and N Sriram Balaji for the tie to be played this weekend (April 7-9) in Bangalore. Paes and Bopanna had been kept as reserves to the Davis Cup squad.
However, after Yuki Bhambri was forced to pull out with a knee injury, Bhupathi was left to select between the 43-year-old veteran Paes and 37-year-old Bopanna, who last played a Davis Cup tie in 2016.
Rohan Bopanna is India’s highest ranked men’s doubles player at the moment. He is ranked 24 in the ATP men’s doubles charts. He will partner Balaji in the doubles rubber to be played on Saturday.
Leander Paes is a Davis Cup veteran of 55 ties and with 42 doubles rubber wins.
Gunneswaran and Ramanathan will play the singles and reverse singles rubbers on Friday and Sunday respectively. Gunneswaran and Balaji are set to make their Davis Cup debut this weekend.