New Delhi: India's Rohan Bopanna has announced his partnership with American Rajeev Ram for the 2013 ATP season. His current partner Mahesh Bhupathi will team up with Canadian Daniel Nestor. Bhupathi-Bopanna ended 2012 with a runners-up finish at the World Tour Finals in London Monday on top of titles earlier in Dubai and Paris.
Bopanna is excited about his new pairing with the world no. 44 Ram. "I played with Mahesh in 2012 with a special focus on preparing for the London Olympics and now that it's over, I want to concentrate on the ATP circuit and am eager to build a strong, sustainable partnership. "Rajeev is a great player, and given our individual strengths, and his command of the deuce court, I believe that we can complement each other very well on the court," said Bopanna.
28-year-old Ram, with his booming serve and solid groundstrokes, has maintained a fine balance between the singles and doubles circuits, choosing to spend the last few years limiting his single appearances and concentrating on his doubles game. Partnering Scott Lipsky over the last couple of years, Ram has won titles at Delray Beach and San Jose in 2011 and has won the St. Petersburg Open in September of 2012 while partnering Nenad Zimonjic.
Looking forward to the new partnership, Rajeev said: "I am very excited to play with Rohan in 2013. He is not only one of the best doubles players in the world but also a good friend." The duo had earlier made an appearance as a team at the Australian Open in 2008, where as an unseeded combination they proceeded to the pre-quarters defeating higher ranked teams along the way. With a total of 14 ATP doubles titles between them, Rohan and Rajeev are looking to recapture the magic in 2013.
Given the highly competitive nature of the ATP circuit, Rajeev was also cautious of looking too far ahead. "Looking at the first month of the year, there are two big events in Chennai and the Australian Open so there is no need to look any further than that," he said. "We haven't played together since 2008 so it has been a while. I just hope to continuously improve so that we can reach our full potential," he added. Bhupathi had announced his next year plans with Nestor. He is likely to retire at the end of 2013.