Leander Paes laments state of Indian Davis Cup, says will take a decade to lift standard | Tennis News – Times of India

NEW DELHI: The Indian tennis has been in a pathetic state for fairly a while now and the nation’s relegation to Davis Cup World Group 2 added extra woes to the situation.
India suffered a 2-3 loss to Denmark of their away fixture earlier this month to get relegated to World Group 2 for the primary time.
Voicing his concern on the present state of Indian tennis, icon Leander Paes believes it would take a “higher half of a decade” to raise the usual.
“I really feel like it should take a couple of years, till the Davis Cup crew has some severe expertise in it,” stated the participant with a file 45 doubles victories in Davis Cup.
Indian tennis’ decline was obvious throughout the Australian Open final month when, for the primary time since 2017, no participant from the nation might make the reduce to compete within the qualification spherical of a Grand Slam.
“I really feel fairly saddened in a means that we do not have one participant within the singles rating within the top-300. I do not assume that is ever occurred,” stated the Olympic bronze medallist.
Prajnesh Gunneswaran is presently the highest-ranked Indian in singles at 306 on the ATP record.
“I’ve super respect for all our Indian gamers who’re travelling on the circuit in a sport like tennis the place the price of coaching and conducting (making a) the profession is so costly.”
“In tennis, the place 99 per cent of the game is performed exterior the nation, being alone on the circuit just isn’t straightforward. Zeeshan (Ali) and I’ve slept in locker rooms as a result of we did not have cash to pay for a lodge.
“That being stated, I believe it should take a greater half of a decade for the Davis Cup crew to have that high quality like we had when Ramesh Krishnan, Zeeshan Ali, Vijay Amritraj and all of us had… To get to the semi-finals within the Davis Cup is harder now,” he stated.
Leander was addressing the media sitting beside his father Dr Vece Paes, a bronze medallist on the 1971 hockey World Cup in Barcelona, and the Munich Olympics in 1972.
Biopic within the pipeline
Leander, who campaigned for the Trinamool Congress forward of the Goa Meeting elections final 12 months, refused to take any political questions and stated he is presently busy engaged on a biopic to painting the father-son duo’s legacy on the large display screen. He revealed that it ought to be prepared in 18 months.
“I am working alone story proper now. I’ll give a little bit nugget immediately that the Leander storyboard is being labored on proper now. I am unable to communicate a lot about it.
“It will likely be a narrative of how baba (father) received his Olympic medal in 1972 and some of you’re sufficiently old to know what occurred there.
“You all will perceive why a younger boy rising as much as my father’s historical past, my ardour was to emulate him. So it should be about 1972 to 1996 actually.
“It is going to be an inspirational story on how not essentially it’s a must to be the tallest, most gifted, expert (particular person) to change into an athlete… Not essentially you’ll have to have nice infrastructure both.
“I am engaged on a storyboard in the meanwhile and hopefully in 18 months you’re going to get to see it and the posters can be on the market.”
Requested whether or not he desires to get into sports activities administration and be part of the All India Tennis Affiliation (AITA), he gave an oblique reply.
“I used to be born right into a home the place each my mother and father performed for Tiranga (Tri-colour), I grew up in a home the place I ironed my father’s taking part in jersey, which had No. 10 on it. My mom’s jersey was No. 5,” stated Leander, who was born right into a sports activities household with father a hockey Olympian and mom, Jennifer, an Indian basketball captain.
“After I take a look at India as an entire, for me doing issues for the group and creating alternatives for the youth is a very powerful factor. The subsequent decade can be very attention-grabbing as we’re the youngest nation on this planet.
“While you discuss sports activities as a car to offer alternative to the youth, that’s the place my ardour is. My ardour is giving alternatives to the youth in order that they will reside their desires.”
Djokovic, the GOAT
Leander additionally hailed Novak Djokovic’s Australian Open victory final month, that introduced him on par with Rafael Nadal’s 22 profession Grand Slams.
The win got here only a 12 months after the Serbian was deported from the identical venue for not being vaccinated towards COVID-19.
“Djokovic did not get an opportunity to play in Australia due to COVID points, but it surely was fantastic to see him successful the Australian Open on his return final month.
“For me his perseverance, his tenacity, his grit is one thing that I love rather a lot. Sure, he will get a little bit of a foul repute due to the way in which he conducts the eagerness, the arrogance that he has, the way in which he is daring in making statements.
“Just a few folks might not like his persona however for me I’ve a lot respect for his persona. He comes from a rustic that’s actually exhausting and hard and from there to change into a champion, speaks rather a lot.
“He is bought one other 4 years forward of him, that is 16 Grand Slams. Is he going to win one or two extra? 100 per cent. He might win no less than 5 extra. I believe in my humble opinion, Djokovic will go down within the historical past books as the best of all time,” Leander signed off.
(With PTI Inputs)

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