New Delhi: India`s External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna Thursday played a key role in convincing Leander Paes to pair-up with Vishnu Vardhan and end the week-long drama over the selection of the men`s doubles team for the London Olympics.
Krishna, honorary life president of the All India Tennis Association (AITA), spoke with Paes early Thursday morning and convinced him to pair with Vishnu for the sake of the nation.
"Mr. Krishna personally spoke with Leander in the morning and told him that he should make some sacrifices for the sake of the nation. The AITA hopes Leander will now give Vishnu a chance to play his first Olympics," AITA secretary-general Bharat Oza said.
AITA president Anil Khanna also said the decision of sending two teams was taken after consulting Krishna, a tennis player himself.
"Mr. Krishna`s guidance and approval helped the AITA to arrive at the decision. Mr. Krishna has been a tennis player himself and knows the values of the players," said Khanna.
Krishna Wednesday had asked Mahesh Bhupathi and Rohan Bopanna to resolve their problems with Paes for the best interest of the country.
Krishna told the players that they should respect India`s interest and resolve their individual differences at the earliest. He also told the players that India`s image should never be compromised for personal issues.