Chennai to host India-Australia Davis Cup tie

March 17th, 2009 - 4:31 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, March 17 (IANS) The Davis Cup third round tie between India and Australia will be held at Chennai May 8-10.
Setting aside the long tradition of playing on a grasscourt at home, India will dish out a hard court for the visitors, keeping in mind country’s top singles players Somdev Devvarman’s affinity for the surface.

All India Tennis Association (AITA) Secretary General Anil Khanna said the decision to play on hardcourt has been taken keeping in mind the interests of the players.

Therefore, it will be for the first time in 30 years that India will host a Davis Cup tie on a hardcourt.

Indian team’s non-playing captain S.P. Misra had informed AITA that players are keen on playing in Chennai.

Also, Chennai had recently conducted an ATP Tour event where all the leading players of the world participated. Somdev registered his best career performance at the $40,000 event, reaching the final.

He was also the star of India’s 3-2 away win against Chinese Taipei in Davis Cup last week.

“In a meeting with the non-playing captain, we were informed the team is keen to play the tie in Chennai especially because of the performance of Somdev Devvarman in Chennai Open in January,” Khanna said.

“Moreover the other Indian players including Leander Paes, Mahesh Bhupathi and Rohan Bopanna have all played in Chennai during the Chennai Open and are familiar with the conditions.”

Executive Director of AITA Ranbir Chauhan will be visiting Chennai Thursday, and will have meetings with officials of the Tamil Nadu Tennis Association (TNTA), police, hotel and a security company to oversee the arrangements.

The team which won against Chinese Taipei will be retained. However, more reserve players will be added to the squad and these players will be named at a later date after the meeting of the selection committee.

The winner of the tie between India and Australia will move to the World Group play-off.

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