Veteran Paes reaches century of doubles partners

Wed Jun 24, 2015 3:59pm EDT
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LONDON (Reuters) - India's Leander Paes says chemistry is the most important factor when choosing a doubles partner and he should know, having now experimented with 100 different players.

Teaming up with Spain's Marcel Granollers at the Nottingham grasscourt tournament this week meant veteran Paes, a doubles specialist, reached the century milestone in men's doubles.

Some might raise their eyebrows and suggest Paes just struggles to commit, but constant hopping about between different partners is actually not that unusual.

He is the 47th player to notch up 100 different partners but few can boast his success rate.

Eight grand slam men's doubles titles and seven mixed doubles crowns have earned him a tidy fortune and the 42-year-old is still going strong, reaching the Nottingham quarter-finals as he warms up for Wimbledon.

"It means I've had a very long career," Paes, who reached 700 match wins recently at the French Open, told on Wednesday.

"It's quite intriguing in an individual sport like tennis to have actually had that many doubles partners.

"I always try to learn new tricks and keep reinventing myself. It's been a very blessed journey to go through 25 years and 100 partners."

Paes has completed the career grand slam in doubles and won the first two of his eight men's doubles majors (the French Open and Wimbledon in 1999) with compatriot Mahesh Bhupathi.   Continued...

Martina Hingis (L) of Switzerland and Leander Paes of India pose with their trophy after defeating Kristina Mladenovic of France and Daniel Nestor of Canada to win their mixed doubles final match at the Australian Open 2015 tennis tournament in Melbourne February 1, 2015.  REUTERS/Issei Kato