The Indian pair did not even need its A game in trouncing the visitors 6-3 6-4 6-4 in just one hour and 41 minutes at the grass courts of Chandigarh Club. Saketh Myneni and Ramkumar Ramanathan had won their respective singles yesterday to hand India a 2-0 cushion.
The reluctant partners for the Rio Olympics did not face any competition from the Koreans in what is their only competitive match together before the Games. Even as the Koreans managed to break Paes in the third set, they did not present any challenge to the Indians. But it was a treat for the fans, little more than a thousand, to watch the Indian pair cruise to the win under overcast and friendly conditions.
Teaming up for the fifth time at the Davis Cup, it was their third win. Before this they had won against Serbia (2014) and Kazakhstan (2007) and lost to Uzbekistan (2012) and Czech Republic (2015).
Captain Anand Amritraj would be delighted to see that his idea of playing on the grass worked for his side.In the inconsequential reverse singles, Myneni will face Seong Chan Hong and Ramkumar will take on Yong-Kyu Lim tomorrow. India’s rivals in the World Group Play-offs in September will be either China or Uzbekistan, who led 2-1 at the end of day two of their tie.
Since the rain stayed away yesterday and this morning, the court played much better today, offering good bounce.Sending down two double faults in the opening game was the only blemish for Bopanna, who kept tormenting Chung and Hong with his booming serves in the range of 200kms/hour throughout the match. He fired nine out of the 12 aces that India hit today.
The vintage deft touch of Paes too was on display as the veteran hit many unreachable drop shots.
Age might have slowed him down a bit but he still has the best hands in the country. And the Koreans got a taste of Paes’ master class.