Top Indian tennis stars assemble for Petroleum meet ahead of busy season
The PSPB tournament will see India's Davis Cup players face off against each other.
India’s top tennis players will look to warm up for a new season when they feature in the 41st Petroleum Sports Promotion Board inter-unit competition at the DLTA complex here.
Rohan Bopanna, Sumit Nagal, Yuki Bhambri, Ramkumar Ramanathan, Vishnu Vardhan, Divij Sharan and Prarthana Thombare and Riya Bhatia among women will all play in the four-day meet that started on Sunday.
With a slew of Futures, Challengers and ATP Tour events (Pune) lined up in the next few months, the tournament will be serve as good preparation.
Vardhan, who is also the tournament organising secretary, said: “We've a record number of participants this year and all the top stars of PSPB are competing. We never get a chance to see Ramkumar and Sumit and Yuki playing against each other, not even in the nationals. This is the only event in India where the No 1 in singles and doubles in men and women participate. It shows the support system the companies are providing to the players that they are showing up in these events,” said Vardhan, who will compete in singles and doubles.
Altogether, there will be nine teams. Sumit Nagal, Ramkumar, Bopanna, Divij Sharan and Thombare will be part of the Indian Oil team while Yuki, Vishnu, VM Ranjeet and Ankita Raina will represent Oil and Natural Gas Commission (ONGC). ONGC chairman OP Singh was the chief guest at the opening ceremony on Sunday.
The All India Tennis Association will organise three ATP 100 Challenger events in Chennai, Bengaluru and Pune early next year. Another in Nagpur is also on the cards. There will also be Future events for men and women and the Tata Open Maharashtra, the ATP 250 event in December.
“It is good to see AITA bring so many international events across categories and of different levels. There will be 400 points up for grabs in the next three-four months and it will be a great opportunity for every player to move up almost 300 to 400 spots in the rankings. Throughout the year we try to play events where we have 300 points in total. This time we will be getting three months in India, playing in home conditions,” Vardhan said.