Sportstar Aces Awards 2024: “After years of sacrifice, I have finally reached my dream,” says Bopanna

Bopanna recently became the oldest player, aged 43, to achieve the World No.1 ranking in men’s doubles.

Published : Feb 08, 2024 21:58 IST , MUMBAI - 2 MINS READ

Australian Open men’s doubles champion Rohan Bopanna won the ‘Ace of Aces award’ at the Sportstar ACES Awards 2024 held at the Taj Mahal Palace here on Thursday.

Bopanna received the award from fellow tennis player and grand slam champion, Leander Paes. “I always wished I could play doubles with Bopanna,” Paes said.

Bopanna recently became the oldest player, aged 43, to achieve the World No.1 ranking in men’s doubles.

“We are constantly travelling and playing tournaments, so it feels great to come here and meet all these wonderful athletes that India has produced. My goal was to win a men’s doubles grand slam and to reach the world number one ranking. After years and years of sacrifice, I have finally reached my dream,” Bopanna said.

“It is very humbling for me to reach these heights from the beautiful land of Coorg. It was my parents who insisted that I train in an individual sport. That is when my tennis journey started, in Coorg. And now I have gone all the way across the world to win a grand slam in Melbourne,” Bopanna said.

Bopanna explained that his focus on adequate recovery changed the path of his career.

ALSO READ: Mohammed Shami wins Sportsman of the Year (Team Sports) at Sportstar Aces Awards 2024

“I started to focus on recovery at the end of 2019. My cartilages in the knee had fully worn out. I took around two or three painkillers a day. Doctor told me to try platelet rich plasma injections. But just injections will not work; I had to do strengthening exercises. That’s when I discovered Iyengar Yoga. I was in extreme pain, so I gave it a try. Because of Iyengar Yoga, I can now play tennis without pain. I never thought this day will come,” Bopanna said.

The event is presented by Amul, powered by IDFC First Bank in association with Indian Oil. The associate partners are LIC India, State Bank of India, Greyon Cosmetic, India Cements, United India Insurance, NTPC, Ramaiah University. The realty partner is Casagrand, with online grocery partner Big Basket, colour partner Nippon Paint and education partner Christ University. The co-sponsors are Pratiyogita Darpan, SSVM, PSG, Signpost, Digital OOH Partner, NDTV, Broadcast Partner, WordsWork, PR Partner and Dailyhunt, Online Streaming Partner.

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