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Paes denies rumours of Bhupathi split

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Originally published on: 17/11/11 10:11

Leander Paes has brushed off rumours of an imminent split with doubles partner Mahesh Bhupathi but admits their partnership was never intended to span a long term.

The Indian pair reunited at the Australian Open this year after nine years apart and are due to compete together at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals from Sunday.

But reports this week suggested that Bhupathi has decided to team up with Rohan Bopanna with an eye on the London 2012 Olympics, while Paes denied there was any imminent talk of a split.

“As things currently stand, Mahesh and me have not yet decided to part ways as such,” Paes said.

“We have the all-important ATP World Tour Finals that begin on Sunday and after that tournament we will sit down together to have a discussion to decide about our respective futures.

“When Mahesh and me got together [again] we had clearly announced that we would take the partnership ahead one month at a time and see how things pan out. It was never a long-term thing. But having said that, we have not yet decided to part ways as such.”

Paes, who won bronze at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, refuted talk that he and Bhupathi would not play together at the Davis Cup or at the Olympics.

“Country always comes first and we will definitely be together for the Davis Cup. And I think everyone knows about my dream of playing my sixth Olympics,” he said. “Besides, the London Games is a good nine months away, so it’s way too early to speculate.

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