Bengaluru, 6th February 2020 : The Bengaluru Open ATP Challenger could not have got a bigger boost than the participation of virtually the God of Indian Tennis – Leander Paes who is in his swan song this year, ending a decorated career spanning 30 years and has been instrumental in putting India on the global tennis map. The US $ 162,000 event begins at the KSLTA from 10th February.
Paes is playing select tournaments during the year as a part of a farewell tour that he’s calling “One Last Roar” in his gesture of showing gratitude to everyone who has helped shape his career. It is an honour for the tennis lovers of Bengaluru that the Indian doubles legend has chosen the Garden city to play his last event on the Indian soil.
“Playing at home in front of my fellow Indians has always been a source of immense pleasure and motivation for me. Bangalore has always had a crowd that understands tennis and the vibe of the stadium and the energy of the city really invigorate me,” said Paes from Pune where is playing an ATP Tour event.
“We are glad and excited that the Indian Tennis legend Leander Paes’ last match on Indian soil will be at the KSLTA court. His celebrated career and achievements have been a guiding light for the upcoming tennis talents, not only in the country but beyond too. This is a big moment for both Bengaluru Tennis Open 2020 and KSLTA,” said Mr. Priyank Kharge, former Minister for IT, BT, and Tourism who is the visionary behind Bengaluru Open and the Chairman of the Organising Committee.
Paes, who at 46, is still ranked in the top 100 speaks volumes of his fitness and passion that he has not only carried on himself but has influenced and motivated many a youngster. His incredible record includes 39 weeks at No.1 in the FedEX ATP Doubles Rankings, 768 tour-level victories, 54 ATP Tour Doubles titles including eight Grand Slam men’s doubles crowns apart from winning 10 Grand Slam mixed doubles titles. He has also the distinction of completing the Grand Slam in both men’s doubles and mixed doubles.
Paes went on to earn singles honours as well with a Tour level title with the bronze medal at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta being the closest to his heart. With just three short of 100 Grand Slam appearances, the ace tennis pro is aiming to play all the Slams this year before signing off.
“To my Bangalore friends, fans and tennis lovers, I am looking forward to entertaining all of you “One Last Roar” time. See you guys soon,” said Paes who last played in Bengaluru in the Davis Cup 2014 where he partnered with Rohan Bopanna to pull off an impossible win in the doubles event against Serbia.