The Olympics are an important event of the Indian tennis calendar. India has so far won a solitary bronze in the 1996 edition at Atlanta. They came very close to winning a medal in doubles and mixed doubles in 2004 and 2016 respectively. On both occasions they ended up losing the Bronze Medal match in the deciding set. In 1992 the Indian pair could not cross the quarter finals, as winning that would have assured them of a bronze medal.India’s hopes of medal in Tokyo Olympics are only in Men’s Doubles and Mixed Doubles. There are no Indian singles player in the top 100 in either Men or Women rankings. India would like to believe that both Rohan Bopanna and Sania Mirza can break into the top 10 in World Rankings at the end of the revised qualification timeline.
Rohan Bopanna is the highest ranked Indian Doubles player, and he is likely to be in both teams for Men’s Doubles and Doubles. He is 40 already, and will be 41 now, before the Tokyo Olympics begin. Not only will he need to keep his fitness at the optimum level for another 18 months, but also need to develop on his rankings. Since about 04 months of the Olympic qualification cycle totalling around 10,000 ranking points wiped off due CoronaVirus spread, the qualification timelines may be reset on resumption of tour. The entire strategy will need a re look.
Leander Paes is a 18 time Grand Slam winner for India. He is also the lone Olympic medalist for India in tennis. Leander has played 07 Olympics already. This in itself is a record in the sport of tennis, and for India also. He dreams to play an 8th Olympic, to make the record his own for many many years. But with the anticipation of Olympics happening in 2020, he already announced that 2020 will be his farewell year on Tour. He will need to rethink his options, if he has to live his Olympic dreams. Leander will be 46 this year, and will be 47 before the Olympic starts in 2021, incase the Olympics are held in summer of 2021.
Sania Mirza may not be unhappy at all due the postponement . She is making a return to the courts post motherhood. Whatever she has played till now post her return, will keep her in a good frame of mind. Once the Tour resumes, and the new qualification guidelines are in place, she can plan her schedule accordingly. Sania won her first event on return at Hobart, indicating she still has tennis left in her. She will make all efforts to reach back to the top 10 in Women’s Doubles, which she richly deserves. Top 10 finish will also ensure a Olympic qualification for her. She is only 34, so age is not an issue for her.