Bangalore: Indian tennis legend Leander Paes says he aspires to exit from the game just like global icons Pele and Mohammad Ali who bid adieu to their respective sports when they were at the pinnacle of their careers.
Leander Paes. Pic/PTI
A much fitter and leaner Paes, 41, says winning a medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics would give him such opportunity. "That (winning a medal at Rio) would give me a chance to go on a high from the game.
I have always looked up to people like Mohammed Ali, who left at the pinnacle of his career. I looked up to someone like a Pele, a Michael Jordan, a Carl Lewis, a Rod Laver, who left at the pinnacle of their careers, I think you have got the trend," Paes told PTI.
Paes, winner of 14 Grand Slam titles and an Olympic bronze medallist in singles, feels it is imperative for a tennis player with a game like his to draw a fine "balance between strength and flexibility".
"For me it's about athleticism. My game is based on speed and quick reflexes so my training system is all about staying injury free. I make sure that my tennis specific muscles are in good shape, with strength and flexibility," he said.