• Wednesday, May 22, 2024

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‘We are old, but gold,’ Djokovic tells Bopanna

At the Monte Carlo Masters, Bopanna and Djokovic had a friendly chat about their long careers. (Photo credit: ATP)

By: Vivek Mishra

Rohan Bopanna, aged 44, boasts the distinction of being the oldest player to reach the top of the doubles rankings, while Novak Djokovic, at 36, recently eclipsed Roger Federer to become the oldest number one in the latest singles rankings chart.

At the Monte Carlo Masters, veteran tennis players Bopanna and Djokovic had a friendly chat about their long careers. Even though they have different playing styles, both stressed the importance of dedication and experience in succeeding on the ATP Tour.

The ATP Tour brought the world number ones for a conversation as they prepared for the tournament.

“Tennis imparts invaluable lessons, and experience reigns supreme,” said Bopanna in a video shared by ATP.

Djokovic responded by saying it is not just all about experience. “I would say experience but also still being dedicated and devoted to the game every single day.

“I see him (Bopanna) in the gym for countless hours and also more hours with the physio, bit more than before (laughs) but it is amazing to share the tour with you for so many years.

“What an incredible moment to be the oldest number in singles and doubles. It is great for Serbian and Indian tennis,” said Djokovic.

Djokovic has not played in India since featuring in the now-defunct International Tennis Premier League (ITPL) which was held from 2014 to 2016.

“Hopefully, we can do something in India soon, we can play there, have not been to India for many years. It is a huge and amazing country.

“To have tennis at the high level of popularity in India is extremely important for our sport and you are contributing to that along with Sania Mirza, (Mahesh) Bhupathi, and (Leander) Paes paved the way,” he said to Bopanna, who won the Miami Masters title last month.

“We are old but gold,” said Djokovic and ended the conversation with a ‘Namaste’.

Djokovic is widely considered one of the greatest tennis players ever. He holds the record for the most Grand Slam men’s singles titles at 24 and has spent a record 420 weeks ranked No. 1 in the world. He’s also the only player to achieve a triple Career Grand Slam by winning all four majors at least three times.

Bopanna has won two Grand Slam titles, including a record-breaking Australian Open win in 2024 at the age of 43.

Pakistan Weekly

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