Asia Cup from Dec. 19

NEW DELHI, NOV. 27. Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupathi will be seen in action in the $ 90,000 Asia Cup tennis tournament to be staged at the R.K. Khanna Stadium here from December 19 to 24.

The tournament is scheduled to start a day after the World Doubles championship to be held in Bangalore from December 13 to 17, in which Leander and Mahesh have been given a wild card entry.

For the first time in four editions, the Asia Cup will feature the women's section. The tournament will be restricted to the top four men's and women's teams of the region.

Korea, Thailand and Uzbekistan will join India in the men's section which will carry a cash purse of $ 50,000. The winner will get $ 25,000, the runner-up $ 12,500, while the third and fourth teams will get $ 6500 and 6000 respectively.

Thailand, China and Inonesia will fight it out with the host in the women's section which will carry a purse of $ 40,000. The champion will get $ 20,000 and the runner-up $ 10,000. The third and the fourth places will fetch $ 5500 and 4500 respectively.

The tournament will be played on a round-robin legue, and the top two teams in the women's and men's section will play the final which are scheduled for December 23 and 24 respectively.

The referee will be Nao Kawatei of Japan, while the chair umpires will be Shu Chen of China and Ales Yeo of Singapore apart from the country's leading umpires, Puneet Gupta and Nitin Kannamwar.