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World No.1 Rohan Bopanna felicitated by KSLTA at Bengaluru Open

Published at :February 13, 2024 at 2:45 PM
Modified at :February 13, 2024 at 2:45 PM
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Ajay Gandhar

Rohan Bopanna recently won his maiden men’s doubles grand slam with Matt Ebden

Rohan Bopanna, the world number one in men’s doubles and the winner of the Australian Open 2024, was honored by the Karnataka State Lawn Tennis Association (KSLTA) on Monday for his remarkable achievements.

The 43-year-old, who became only the third male Indian player to win a men’s doubles Grand Slam trophy, received a warm welcome and a souvenir from the KSLTA officials at the Cubbon Park Tennis Stadium in Bengaluru.

KSLTA’s Hon Secretary Maheshwar Rao, IAS, and Tournament Director Sunil Yajaman were present at the felicitation ceremony, along with several eminent personalities from the sports fraternity.

Among them were Padma Shri para-athlete KY Venkatesh, former heptathlete and Asian Games bronze medallist Pramila Aiyappa, former tennis player and 1998 Asian Games bronze medallist Srinath Prahlad and 2014 men’s doubles Wimbledon champion Vasek Pospisil, who is currently playing at the Bengaluru Open.

Bopanna, who was born and raised in Bengaluru, shares a great rapport with the KSLTA, where he not only played tennis in his growing years but also was appointed vice president of the state body in 2020.

He thanked the KSLTA for honoring him and thanked his parents, sister, coaches, partners, and well-wishers for their support and encouragement throughout his career.

“I would like to thank the Karnataka State Lawn Tennis Association (KSLTA) for honoring me today. There were a lot of difficulties in this long journey but I never looked at them in a bad way and knew that my opportunity would come,” Bopanna said after the felicitation ceremony.

“My parents and sister gave me tremendous support and I wouldn’t have been here without them. The biggest thing is not to change academies and coaches immediately and be patient with the process.

“A lot of credit goes to everyone who has helped since my younger days and I am grateful to everyone for their part in this journey. My best wishes to everyone playing at the Bengaluru Open.”

Bopanna, who partnered with Matthew Ebden of Australia, clinched his maiden men’s doubles Grand Slam title at the Australian Open 2024, defeating the Italian Pair of Simone Bolelli and Andrea Vavassori.

En route to his inspiring title-winning show in Melbourne, Bopanna also touched the numero uno rank for the first time in his men’s doubles career, becoming the oldest first-time World No. 1 and the third Indian (after Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupathi) to accomplish the feat.

Before the Bops, as he is fondly called, only Paes, Bhupathi, and Sania Mirza have managed to sit atop the ranking table.

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In his glorious career, Bopanna has so far won 25 doubles titles on Tour and has reached the finals of all four Grand Slams.

He will also represent India at the Paris Olympics 2024, where he hopes to win a medal for the country.

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