After 12 Grand Slam titles,Mahesh Bhupathi can lay claim to having conquered a number of tough challenges in his professional tennis career. But on Tuesday at the Panchsheel Club,he found it near impossible to handle all the kids clamouring for an autograph and pleading for one precious picture.
In between obliging autograph and photograph requests,Bhupathi took some time out to speak about Indias chances in the next Davis Cup tie against Chinese Taipei in March 2010,saying it would be a very tough one.
Asian teams are very hard to play against,and they also have a top-100 player in Yen-hsun Lu. They were without him this weekend,and they still managed to beat Kazakhstan, said Bhupathi,who was in town for an event organised by his tennis trust.
Prakash Amritraj will not be part of the squad due to the ruling on non-Indian passport holders. It will be difficult without Prakash,but the Ministry passed the ruling and told us to deal with it,so that’s what well have to do. All the sports federations appeared to be in agreement with the decision,so there isnt anything we can do about it now.
Yuki Bhambri has come in for a lot of praise from Bhupathi as well,and the 34-year-old said it would be a valuable experience for him to be part of the Davis Cup squad,even if he doesnt get a chance to play. Theres no doubt that he’ll be playing for India one day. Even I was part of the squad at a young age,and though I didn’t play at first,just being with the team was great.