Chennai: Leander Paes is yet to decide on representing the country at the Davis Cup in 2014 especially after last year’s revolt involving eight top players including Somdev Devvarman, Rohan Bopanna and Mahesh Bhupathi.
Paes led a second-string Indian team that lost to South Korea in the first round. India, however, retained their spot in elite Group I by winning the relegation play-off against Indonesia.
“I respect the decision of the players, non-playing captain and the Aita. I will decide on what is best after a lot of thought. Having one doubles specialist and three singles specialists is not a perfect team; you need to have players who deserve to be in the team. I will take the right advice from the right people at the right time,” Paes said.
He added that certain things cannot be changed and people have to move on, referring to the 2012 London Olympics fiasco after Bhupathi and Bopanna refused to be paired with Paes.
The 40-year-old ace is partnering Italian Fabio Fognini for the first time in his career. “It is all about adapting to your partner’s style. Fognini is a phenomenal singles player and has one of the best forehands in the game,” he said.
Leander had partnered Janko Tipsarevic earlier. The Serbian’s style is similar to Fognini’s and the Indian doesn’t foresee any problem in adjusting to his new partner’s game.
The Indian icon was concerned about the gulf in the rankings between Somdev and the next best ranked player. “Tennis is a global sport and we can do a lot better in terms of having more tournaments at the international level to bridge the gap,” he said. Leander added that young players should focus on the physical and the mental aspects of the game.