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Doubles player Rohan Bopanna: The king of the old men’s club

Rohan Bopanna: “The most important thing is that I found out what is best for my body, what really works” Image: EPA

Rohan Bopanna is 43 years and 330 days old, the oldest number one tennis doubles player has ever been before him. Since he discovered yoga, things have been looking up for him.

The tall man with the beard, which has long since been dominated by gray, has only just reached the top in Australia when he is already thinking about India and, shortly afterwards, about the whole world. “Tennis in India needs this. But it will inspire a lot of people all over the world, not just in tennis,” says Rohan Bopanna about what he has just achieved at the Australian Open: becoming the oldest number one in the doubles world rankings to be the longest that ever existed, at exactly 43 years and 330 days when the tournament ends on Sunday. And if you want to tell how he achieved this at this age, you have to jump back to 2020 – and know one thing: Bopanna says that he no longer has any cartilage in his knees: “They are completely worn out.”

The cartilage is something like the sliding layer between the two bone ends of the joint. It acts as a shock absorber and ensures that the bones do not rub against each other. With age it becomes rougher and wears out. For some more, for some less. Particularly strong with Bopanna because he slides back and forth on tennis courts, stops and starts running again.

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