By Rohit Mundayur
New Delhi, July 15 (IANS) Veteran tennis player Rohan Bopanna has said that he has no worries about going to Pakistan as part of the Indian Davis Cup team in September.
India and Pakistan have been drawn to compete for the Asia/Oceania Group 1 Tie in Islamabad. This will be the first time since March 1964 that an Indian Davis Cup team will travel to Pakistan.
“I am looking forward to the Davis Cup tie in Pakistan,” Bopanna said on the sidelines of an event here.
“I have spoken to Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi, he is a very good friend of mine and he said things will be fine. I have been there a few times and have always found people there to be very hospitable. So I have no concerns about going there,” he added.
Qureshi is Pakistan’s top-ranked tennis player with whom Bopanna had played doubles before. The two had finished runners-up at the 2010 US Open.
In September, Bopanna (39) is expected to team up with Divij Sharan and the pair are the country’s best ranked doubles players.
Bopanna also said that India were a long way from producing a Grand Slam singles winner. Prajnesh Gunneswaran, India’s top-ranked singles player, had reached the first round of the French Open and Wimbledon where he lost to Bolivia’s Hugo Dellien and Canada’s Milos Raonic, respectively, in straight sets.
“We never had a singles winner in Grand Slams. We need the right kind of facilities and support from the federation and the corporates. That makes a difference. It is an individual sport and having more tournaments in India will help Indians perform better,” he said.
“If we look at the last 15 years, we will see only four players have won Grand Slams. So it is still a long way to go for an Indian to win a singles Major.”
(Rohit Mundayur can be contacted on [email protected])