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After Asian Games, Bopanna eyes Paris Olympics 2024 qualification

Updated on: 14 December,2023 07:05 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Tarkesh Jha |

Having made it to two Grand Slam finals and bagging Asian Games gold this year, Rohan Bopanna is now working hard on qualifying for 2024 Olympics

After Asian Games, Bopanna eyes Paris Olympics 2024 qualification

Rohan Bopanna during a promotional event in the city yesterday. Pic/Shadab Khan

Tennis ace Rohan Bopanna has his eyes set on qualifying for the Paris Olympics 2024 after a celebrated run this year that saw him win the gold medal in mixed doubles with Rutuja Bhosale in the Asian Games in Hangzhou. Bopanna, 43, who made it to the final of both, Wimbledon and US Open in the men’s doubles category with partner Matthew Ebden, is keen to leave no stone unturned and he looks to win laurels for the country in the quadrennial competition next year.

Consistency is key

“I’m extremely well aware of the situation and what needs to be done to qualify for the Paris Olympics. I’m going to give my 100%, get all my resources in, make sure I remain Top 10, which is the key aspect. Whoever I partner will be making their debut for India at the Olympics so that will be a big moment too,” Bopanna said at a promotional event in the city on Wednesday.

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The 2017 French Open mixed doubles champion will be taking a lot of heart from his outing at the Asian Games with Bhosale, who, at 27, played perfect partner to the domineering stature that Bopanna holds on court. Bopanna reflected positively on his partnership with Bhosale, particularly recalling the gold medal match against Chinese Taipei pair’s En-shuo Liang and Tsung-hao Huang.

“When I decided to play with Rutuja, I had a brief idea of how she plays. She has a big forehand, so I thought it could make a good combination where I would be using my six-foot-three presence at the net and she’d be hitting down strokes and intimidate opponents. I went there with one goal, which was to get that gold medal for the country. I wouldn’t have settled for anything less,” Bopanna said. The Davis Cup veteran spoke fondly of his partnership with Ebden too, revealing how he put additional focus on fitness as he did not want to let the Australian down. 

‘Playing with Ebden is fun’

“I told my coach and physiotherapist that I had certain priorities, and that made a difference. Being mentally strong is one of my strengths, but physically if I get stronger, and be pain-free, automatically I start being better on court. The partnership made a huge difference and to have someone calm on the court, it was fun,” Bopanna signed off.

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