AITA to send Two Tennis teams for London Olympics

A compromised formula was announced on Thursday under which Mahesh Bhupathi gets his wish to partner Rohan Bopanna in the doubles, while Leander Paes has been paired with lower-ranked Vishnu Vardhan despite his presentations. Paes, country's number one player, has however, been compensated by being named for the mixed doubles along with Sania Mirza, thereby turning Bhupathi's desire to play alongside her. The compromise formula worked out by All India Tennis Association (AITA) was announced barely hours before the deadline for sending entries expired. This means that India will take part in at least three tennis events provided Sania gets a wild card entry which is expected. Wild cards will be announced by the ITF on June 28.
There was no immediate reaction from Paes, who had threatened to boycott the Olympics, if he was paired with a junior. Vardhan is ranked 206. Paes' father Dr Vece however said, he would be disappointed by the AITA decision and it was difficult to say which way he would go. Put in a quandary, after the three top players threatened to opt out of the mega event, AITA conceded that its decision was "not fair" in all respects but was in the "best interest of the nation". AITA came out in wholesome praise of Paes by describing him as most patriotic player and appealed to him to partner Vardhan.


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