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March 3, 2012

Mahesh Bhupathi

Rohan Bopanna


6‑4, 3‑6, 10‑5

THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  (In progress.)
MAHESH BHUPATHI:  But I think, again, big points we started off well.  Starting off the super‑tiebreaker was the key to the win.

Q.  You must be delighted win to your first total together so soon.
ROHAN BOPANNA:  Yeah, absolutely.  It's my first ATP 500 title, I mean, you know.  Of course as a team it is a first, but even ‑‑ otherwise I won a 250, won a Masters Series, but never a 500.
This is great, and obviously, you know, it's great to play with Mahesh.  All that 17 years of experience on court I think really helps, you know, in those close matches and these big moments.

Q.  You said 17 years on tour.  What have you learned from him in your short time together?
ROHAN BOPANNA:  Plenty.   Ten years now I been been part of the Davis Cup team for such a long time, so...
You know, he's helped me so much throughout my career coming from up from the,  you know, absolutely low level, from futures, always kept in touch with me and helped me whenever possible, which is great.
It's a good opportunity for me to play with him, alongside with him.  Couldn't have asked for anything better than winning this title.

Q.  Do you guys feel there is a lot of support for you here?  Tell us about the crowd and the atmosphere.
MAHESH BHUPATHI:  Yeah, it's amazing.  It's, you know, even better than playing at home, because the stadium here is bigger than Chennai.
For me, fortunately, it's my fifth final I think and it's always like this on Saturday.  It's amazing, so many Indians.  That's why we get through so many.

Q.  Tell us a little bit about the partnership.  Of course you're great friends.  Most times it looks like you're leading the team, but then a lot of times Rohan is saying stuff.  Talk about your partnership.
MAHESH BHUPATHI:  I think we talk a lot on court because of that come communication that has develop through our friendship.  I think that helps.  He's not afraid to tell me what I'm doing wrong.
But at the same time, you know, we're just kind of feeding off each other's strengths.  I think we are very aware of what our strengths and weaknesses are, and we're kind of feeding off each other's strengths and we're very dangerous.

Q.  Obviously Matkowski and Fyrstenberg came back at the start of the second set.  What was the thought process?  That could have been a momentum shift, but you regathered.
ROHAN BOPANNA:  I mean, with this format it's always tough.  You know, it's just one point here and there which makes a difference.  I mean, we had a chance, you know, to get back in that match in the second set, but we missed a couple of easy shots and, you know, we gave them the opportunity of taking that lead.
As Mahesh said, that tiebreak was key to get up and have a good start.  That's what we did, and, you know, got through that.

Q.  At the start when you came together there was some negative criticism back home.  Winning the title today, is it kind of a rebuttal to what they say, or do you just not care and you know how you're going to work as a team?
MAHESH BHUPATHI:  I mean, who are these people again?

Q.  There was some criticism.
ROHAN BOPANNA:  Yeah.  Are they tennis experts?  Yeah.
ROHAN BOPANNA:  I mean, I think somebody with 17 years of experience I think is far more better ‑‑ you know, he makes the call of where he's going to play and, you know, what format we going to be playing.
So I think it's much easier that way.

Q.  What's the objectives or goals for the year?  Obviously part of the reason is for the Olympics.
MAHESH BHUPATHI:  Yeah, that's definitely the plan.  You know, that's why we decided to play together this year, and look forward to that.

Q.  Are you guys thinking about mixed doubles with Sania somehow?
ROHAN BOPANNA:  We're all thinking about that.  (Laughing.)
MAHESH BHUPATHI:  There are three of us thinking about it.  We don't don't know what she's thinking.  We decided to play one match each.

Q.  How will you settle it?
MAHESH BHUPATHI:  It's going to be a fist fight.  Bopanna is favorite right now.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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