Monday, August 27, 2007

Leander Paes to pair up with Jamie Murray

Doubles specialist Leander Paes has asked British player Jamie Murray to pair up with him in at least two ATP tournaments following the US Open.

Paes and Martin Damm of the Czech Republic are the defending champions at the year's final Grand Slam in New York and are seeded fourth in the men's doubles.

Jamie, the older brother of Britain's number one Andy Murray, is an accomplished doubles player in his own right having won three tournaments this season in partnership with American Eric Butorac.

Murray will now pair up with world number eight Paes for ATP tournaments in Bangkok (September) and Tokyo (October).

"I have a talent for spotting something special in people," Paes was quoted as saying by The Times. "I spotted it a year ago when he was relatively unknown. It's that X-factor thing."
Paes should know. He and Mahesh Bhupathi were one of the best doubles pairs ever and even after their infamous split the Indian duo have won several titles in partnership with other players.

Interestingly, even Bhupathi has played with Murray this year, teaming up with the world no. 28 in the Cincinnati Masters where they lost to the world's best pair - Bob and Mike Bryan - in the second round.

Murray told The Times Paes had approached him several times.

"I didn't think about it too much because I was playing with Booty (Butorac) and we were playing well. He kept asking me and I thought, 'It's a great opportunity to try and play with someone like that.'"
But Murray's regular partner Butorac, who is playing with the 21-year-old Scot at the US Open, didn't sound too happy about the new pairing.

"Paes is 34. It might be fun to play a couple of tournaments with him, but in a year or two I'm probably going to be the better player," Butorac told the paper. "I hope Jamie realises that."
Who should Paes pair up with?
Martin Damm
Mahesh Bhupathi
Jamie Murray
David Rikl
Rohan Bopanna
Nenad Zimonjic free polls


  1. wow! some comments:
    1. Paes has attitude in thinking he can spot talent. Overconfident perhaps?
    2. Butorac has even more attitude in assuming he will be the better player than Murray. again, supremely overconfident. There's something called humbleness which is missing.
    3. your polling question re whom paes should pair up with is v subjective: if one looks at past record, paes-bhup were by far one of the best ever. but then, they have also been notoriously incompatible with one other. also, paes is 34, and he seems to be gunning for the age factor - go for younger partners who are probably more agile and fit than yourself theory. And surely, nationality is not an issue - therefore, I believe Bopanna does not deserve a place in that list, unless you count Davis Cup draws under the question. In that case, another interesting query pops up: assuming paes-bhup refuse to play with one another (even for the sake of the country!), then which of the two should actually play the doubles - paes or bhupathi (regardless of who their partner is).

    Ok, long comment. hope you have survived until the end...:p cheers

  2. SCS: You are absolutely right. Want to point out that Butorac is saying he will be a better player than Paes, not Murray.
    And as for Bopanna, his doubles titles with Qureshi have proved he's no small fry. Still, Paes might be planning to pair up with him next year.
    Though I wish Paes and Bhupathi had patched up and not lost the opportunity to win more Grand Slams.


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