The response came when Paes was asked at the press conference if India is a waning force when it comes to Davis Cup doubles rubbers.

The doubles match is traditionally considered to be India's forte with greats like Paes and Bhupathi helping their side win several contests in the past decade. "We have got so spoilt in the fact that Mahesh and I won so many matches -- Davis Cup ties and created some crazy record... 24 matches on the trot that we won. I am using the word gently, but we were a bit spoilt with that combination," Paes stated.

"That combination was phenomenal for what it was. We played together for eight years to reach where we are. But now let us put that aside,” he added.

The question arose after Paes and Rohan Bopanna lost the lone doubles rubber in straight sets to give the visiting Czech Republic team a 2-1 lead in the playoff. The fancied Indian pair went down to veteran Radek Stepanek and Adam Pavlasek 5-7, 2-6, 2-6 in two hours and nine minutes at the Delhi Lawn Tennis Association (DLTA) complex.

However, the 42-year-old, who won the US Open mixed doubles title with Swiss star Martina Hingis last week, praised the 20-year-old Pavlasek for his performance in hot and humid conditions.

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