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Prone to cramps, Myneni insists there are no fitness issues

 Agencies |  2016-09-01 22:49:22.0  |  New Delhi

Prone to cramps, Myneni insists there are no fitness issues

Playing at his maiden Grand Slam, Myneni had a match point in the fifth set against world number 49 Jiri Vesely in the US Open first round. But cramps in his right thigh thwarted his progress and a victory, which was very much in hands, slipped away.

The 28-year-old says it was not a fitness issue but admitted that he needs to find a certain solution to this problem, the basis of which is perhaps his body's high sweat rate.

Against Korea in the Davis Cup tie last month, Myneni encountered a severe bout of body cramps but  managed to win against Yong-Kyu Lim. "It was not a fitness issue," Myneni asserted in an interaction with PTI when asked if limping out again is a negative advertisement of his fitness standards.

"It was quite humid. And it was not pressure. I just have to find the right balance in my diet and preparations. I have played two quality five-setters in one month and my body tells me that I have to find a solution on how to get the salts back," he said.

During the Korea tie, Lim had recovered to play reverse singles on the final day but Myneni could not play his match and Rohan Bopanna had to pitch in and pull off the singles win. "I lose a lot of fluids while practising too. The trainers know what kind of body I have and it takes a while to get solution. There is progress in the last two years. I have put in a lot of effort," Myneni, who travels without a coach or a trainer, said.

It was a momentous occasion for Myneni to qualify for a Grand Slam after five failed attempts. He came close to record an upset win over Vesely. Was it easy to put behind such a defeat, considering the occasion? Myneni said he won't cry over it. "Mentally I was fine but physically it was tough for me. I was struggling to move, to jump. For me defeat is in past now. That's not me (thinking about victories turned into defeats). It was yesterday and now I need to look forward," he said in a positive tone.

The Indian took many positives from his campaign at the US Open, where he won three qualifying  matches. "There are a lot (positives). Competing at this level and managing a top-50 player. It's a learning curve. Injuries have hampered (my progress) this summer. But now I have the confidence to compete at this level," he said.

Myneni conceded that if he had a travelling trainer with him, it will ensure faster recoveries after intense matches. "It does help if I have a trainer. I have been playing a lot and an Aussie guy helps me out when I am playing at big level, the Grand Slams," he said.

There was no shortage of support for Myneni from the stands as he was cheered on by a large gathering during his matches. He has studied at University of Albama and his friends and the members of the family with whom he lived there during college were there to cheer for him. Myneni wishes that Indian players get such support when they play at home.

"It was great support. I have lived there since my college days. They came and supported me throughout. It's not about me, it's about the sport. People are passionate and I hope that we have a similar culture in India too," he said.                                  

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