Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], September 1 (ANI): Former India tennis star Mahesh Bhupathi has picked Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic and Japan's Naomi Osaka as his favourites to clinch the 2020 US Open title.
Bhupathi revealed his favourites in the tournament during a freewheeling chat with Indian paddler Mudit Dani on his online live show 'In The Sportlight'.
Both Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal are not part of this event, and Djokovic might see smooth sailing in the tournament. The Serbian tennis star is chasing his fourth US Open title.
The US Open commenced on August 31 and will conclude on September 13.
While talking about the importance of mental training at the professional level, the two-time Asian Games doubles gold medallist said: "Mental training is a very important aspect of becoming a professional athlete. When I was growing up, there wasn't enough talk about it, also enough avenues weren't there to explore that. But today every athlete explores that area."
The 46-year-old further expressed the need for making infrastructure accessible to the public to attract more people to sports in India.
"In London, for example, you can pay four pounds and play one hour of tennis. That is where we struggle. In sports like cricket or football, you don't need much facilities to play but in other sports like tennis, table tennis or badminton, you need to be a member of a club which is challenging and that's why numbers don't work in India," said Bhupathi, who has been shaping up young Indian talents across the country with his Mahesh Bhupathi Tennis Academy.
Recalling his early playing days, Bhupathi termed his first-ever Grand Slam title as the breakthrough moment of his career. In 1997, playing alongside Japanese Rika Haraki, the Indian made headlines after winning the mixed doubles title at the French Open. (ANI)