The group of 11 players, who had declined to be part of the Davis Cup Asia-Oceania group ‘I’ tie against Korea, have made a combined representation to the Union Sports Minister, Jitendra Singh, seeking the government’s intervention to get clarification as to why the All India Tennis Association (AITA) opted to “field an inexperienced team.”
“We have shared all relevant facts with the Ministry, explained our position and reiterated the lack of discussion and communication from the AITA in relation to our suggestions for the benefit of Inidan tennis,” the statement from the players said.
Mahesh Bhupathi, Rohan Bopanna, Somdev Devvarman, Yuki Bhambri, Vishnu Vardhan, Sanam Singh, Divij Sharan, Saketh Myneni, Sriram Balaji, Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan and Vijay Sundar Prashanth had expressed their non-availability for the tie till their demands were met.
Though there was time till 10 days before the tie, to be played from February 1 to 3 at the R.K. Khanna Stadium, for officially intimating the International Tennis Federation (ITF), the AITA has been prompt and already sent the team nominations to the ITF.
Leander Paes, V.M. Ranjeet, Vijayant Malik and Purav Raja were selected in the team while Ashwin Vijayaragavan and Arjun Khade will be the reserves.
S.P. Misra will continue to be the captain while former Davis Cupper Zeeshan Ali will be the coach.