Mumbai, Sep 12 (IANS) Following tennis ace Leander Paes’ victory at the US Open, Indian dignitaries from President Pranab Mukherjee to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, sports and film personalities, all congratulated the 42-year-old on his achievement on Saturday.
Paes, partnering Swiss veteran Martina Hingis, defeated unseeded Americans Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Sam Querrey 6-4, 3-6, 10-7 in a tricky final on Friday.
With this title, the 42-year-old Paes clinched his 17th Grand Slam title, also becoming the first man to pocket nine mixed doubles titles, surpassing compatriot and former doubles partner Mahesh Bhupathi, who has eight. In his 17 Grand Slams record, Paes has eight men’s doubles and nine mixed doubles titles.
The Kolkata-born received hearty praise from all quarters and especially on social media with PM Narendra Modi and President Pranab Mukherjee leading the congratulatory messages.
“Well done Leander and Hingis, hearty congratulations on winning the U.S Open mixed doubles,” President Mukherjee tweeted.
“Well played again, Leander and Hingis. Congrats on a great win. We are all very delighted,” PM Modi tweeted.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said, “Congratulations Leander for winning the US Open Mixed Doubles title… We are all so proud.”
“Congratulations! Leander Paes on winning the U.S. Open mixed doubles title with Martina Hingis. India feels proud of your historic victory,” Finance Minister Arun Jaitley tweeted.
It was the third mixed doubles crown of the year for Paes and Hingis, who earlier won the Australian Open final and Wimbledon. They are the first team since 1969 and second in the Open Era to capture three of four Majors in a calendar year.
Indian sports minister Sarbananda Sonowal said, “Many congratulations to Leander and Hingis. You guys are truly legendary!!”
“Leander Paes and Martina Hingis .. congratulations on US Open victory .. bit my painful tooth out during the tie break,” megastar Amitabh Bachchan said.
Legendary leg-spinner Anil Kumble tweeted: “Congratulations Leander and Hingis on winning the Mixed Doubles at the US Open.”
Cricket commentator Harsha Bhogle said: “Leander Paes and his astonishing body just keep going on. And to think of Frejus and France and the same Leander.”
Tennis star Rohan Bopanna tweeted: “Congrats to Hingis and Leander for yet another mixed title. Great effort. US Open.”
Actor Farhan Akhtar tweeted: “And the hits just keep on coming.. Congratulations Leander and Hingis on winning the mixed doubles title.”