Leander Paes picks Hingis over Navratilova in Raja show

Caught in a dilemma when asked to decide between Martina Navratilova and Martina Hingis, Leander chose the latter as Navratilova guided him, while Hingis let him play the way he chose.

leander paes

Leander Paes said he would prefer to mentor young boys rather than be the Davis Cup captain again.   -  R. Ragu

Leander Paes may be keen to play a record eighth Olympics in Tokyo.

However, he was compelled to say no to Olympics, when Purav Raja queried, whether he would compete in 2024, if Tokyo got cancelled. It was a heady climax for the Sunday Instagram Show, Chai with Raja.

When Leander probed about the contents in the designer cup, Purav revealed that it had Chandan Kesar Paani.

Confiding that Raja’s wisdom, a bunch of general questions, went over his head, Leander talked the details about the racquet tension, the natural and synthetic strings that were used in his racquet, and different string tension for clay and grass.

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Leander was equally thrilled to talk about his film, Rajdhani Express, but confessed that his successful business ventures were, “Olympics, Grand Slam doubles and mixed doubles”.

He opted to mentor the boys, rather than be the Davis Cup captain, a position that he had vacated long back.

He was quite sporting to wield his tennis racquet as a cricket bat to imitate the cover drive of Sachin Tendulkar, pull of MS Dhoni, and a straight six of Virender Sehwag.

“Give me the best, give me Virat Kohli’’, said the 47-year-old Leander, when proposed a fitness challenge by the host, who had already got similar commitment from Sumit Nagal and Somdev Devvarman.

Proposing peace with the national tennis federation, Leander said that he knew Marion Bartoli too well to give importance to what she had said about doubles tennis.

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Between Mahesh’s backhand return and Bopanna’s serve, Leander picked the latter, saying “it is one hell of a serve”.

Caught in a dilemma when asked to decide between Martina Navratilova and Martina Hingis, Leander chose the latter as Navratilova guided him, while Hingis let him play the way he chose.

Commending Purav for his show, Leander said, “I can’t wait to see you on global TV’’.

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