Tennis | Passion for the sport keeps me going, says Leander Paes

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Tennis | Passion for the sport keeps me going, says Leander Paes

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SportsCafe Desk

01/24/2019

Leander Paes has stated that passion and love for the game keeps him going and added that he also likes to put in the hard work that goes into all the process. Paes is into his mid-forties but recently participated in Australian Open, even though he was ousted from the tournament early.

Leander Paes participated in Australian Open in both men's doubles and mixed doubles events but was ousted in both these events in early rounds. While Paes along with his partner Samantha Stosur reached the pre-quarterfinals of the mixed-doubles event, the Indian and his men’s doubles event partner Miguel Angel Reyes-Varela could not get past the first round in the men’s doubles event.  

"Passion, I love the game. I love fitness and the hard work that goes behind it. I really, really enjoy being on the court and the competition and the fierceness.

"Just to go out there and learn new shots, learn new movements, learn new things with the diet, with the scientific training the young kids are teaching me," Paes told Reuters.

Even though Paes is in the twilight of his career, there are a fair number of spectators who throng to the stadium to watch him play. He also revealed that even at this stage of his career he is still a highly sought-after player and also provided an example.

"It's pretty special. I am very blessed to have an unbelievable following and that's one of the huge reasons that keeps me going. I love to entertain people, I love to bring them some happiness in their lives. I like to give them a sense that they can achieve their dreams as well, especially the young kids.

"This time in the locker room I have got 23 guys who have asked me to play. It's been quite fun," he said.

In 1996, a young Paes had won a singles bronze medal at the Olympics and since then has won 18 Grand Slam titles. But now he has stated that he has started taking up modern training to keep himself fit.  

"I do a little bit, there are a bunch of different things I do. I look at the modern training, I look at my body type, my speed, my health and I have done quite a few different things."

Paes has started to decline steadily in the doubles ranking and is currently placed in mid-sixties. But he asserted that he will improve and work to make a comeback to the top fifty rankings. He also hinted that maybe one day he will retire but right now the thought has not crossed his mind.

"One day it will come to an end for sure, I know that. Everything that starts comes to an end, that's just the circle of life. But as far as I am concerned I have never ever quit in my life. I am going to be 46 in a few months but I feel fit, I feel strong, I feel healthy and happy. I am living my dream."

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