India have bright prospects in CWG: Bhupathi

Last Updated: May 06, 2010, 22:20 PM IST

Kolkata: Tennis ace Mahesh Bhupathi on Thursday
said India have bright prospects in the forthcoming
Commonwealth Games and players have begun preparing for the
upcoming sporting extravaganza to be held in New Delhi.

"It`s really exciting that India is hosting the
Commonwealth Games. We will try to get as many medals as
possible. There are still a few days left for this,
preparation for the big event is going on in full swing,"

Bhupathi said here this evening during the inauguration of his
roof-top tennis academy, made at a height of 117 feet atop a
shopping mall.

Bhupathi further said India have bright future in Somdev
Devvarman and Yuki Bhambri.

"We have the potential to move forward. India have made
the world group stage of Davis Cup after a long time. Somdev
and Yuki are talented youngsters and they have got potential.

Somdev is close to break into 100. They are moving in the
right direction," the ace doubles player said.

On Sania Mirza`s return to courts post-marriage, Bhupathi
said, "It will be great to have her back on court. I heard she
had started practising, it`s good news for the tennis-buffs."

Talking about his roof-top multi-utility complex which
has three tennis courts besides gymnasium and yoga centre
spread across 28,000 square feet, Bhupathi said they will
target the kids and spot talents from here for his
high-performance centre.

"The main aim is to bring in a lot of kids here and spot
the talent among them. We will then see if they can make the
grade to the high performance centre," he said.

"There will be no particular criteria as such. We will
make the facility available for adults who can come here late
nights after work hours," he added.

Bhupathi also said Kolkata was very close to his heart.

"The city is very close to my heart, having made my Davis
Cup debut here. The city has a tradition of great players.
Chennai and Kolkata are the two centres who are constantly
churning out players.”

"When I first started my high performance coaching
centre, I was itching to start something here. Hopefully, it
will start functioning in a few days and there will be players
from here who will become national champions and kids
representing India," he said.

Asked whether he would take the help of his former
doubles partner Leander Paes with whom he is not in good
terms, Bhupathi said, "Sure why not? When you reach a stage,
each of us has the responsibility to give something back. We
will see when an opportunity arises."

Bhupathi said he would play a tournament in Madrid ahead
of the French Open.

He also spoke about Sachin Tendulkar joining the
micro-blogging website, twitter.

"Sachin is Sachin. He is really special. I was reading a
news article that mentioned about the huge response he is
getting in Twitter. Maybe, he will hit 10 million followers by
the time I am back to Mumbai."

PTI