Tennis Star Rohan Bopanna Poses with Rooster in New PETA Campaign Against Cockfighting

For Immediate Release:
19 July 2016

Benazir Suraiya; [email protected]
Shambhavi Tiwari; [email protected]

Ace AthleteCalls On the Public to Support Real Sports, Not Cockfights

Bangalore – Tennis champion Rohan Bopanna, who recently qualified for the 2016 Summer Olympics, stars in a brand-new campaign for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India. Posing with rescued rooster Smack, he appears next to the words”Tennis Is a Sport – Cockfighting Is Not”. The stunning print visual for the campaign was shot by ace photographer Sam Mohan,and Bopanna’s hair and make-up were done by Tejal Rao.

 “When it comes to cockfights …[roosters]are taught to be aggressive … and they have got knives and spurson their feet, trying to injure one another”, says Bopanna. “Roosters in cockfights are left to die …. Cockfights never really have a victory. One dies, another one gets injured.”

Roosters raised for fighting are often confined to cramped cages and tormented to make them aggressive. Razor-sharp spurs are attached to the birds’ feet to make fights more “exciting”,ie, bloody. The birds often have their eyes gouged out andsustainbroken wings and legs, punctured lungs and severed spinal cords. Those who survive are forced to fight again.

The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960, prohibits forcing animals to fight. And in 2014, the Honourable Supreme Court of India ruled in favour of PETA India by making staged fights between animals illegal nationwide – but cockfights are still organised in some parts of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Punjab,Tamil Nadu and elsewhere.

Bopanna is currently ranked 11th in the world in the doubles category for tennis. He reached his career-high doubles ranking in 2013, when he was ranked number three in the worldby the Association of Tennis Professionals.

For more information, please visit