India’s junior tennis teams target World Group Finals

April 11th, 2009 - 10:11 pm ICT by IANS  

Davis Cup New Delhi, April 11 (IANS) India’s junior Davis Cup and Fed Cup teams will aim to reach the World Group Finals in the Asia-Oceania tennis qualifying event in Australia April 15-20.
The teams will leave Sunday morning for the competition to be held on the grasscourts of Shepparton Lawn Tennis Club and Tatura Lawn Tennis Club in Shepparton, Victoria.

The Indian junior Davis Cup team includes Saurabh Singh, Ronit Bisht and Mohit Mayur while Shweta Rana, Rishika Sunkara, Ratnika Batra and Ankita Raina form the Fed Cup team.

Former India Davis Cupper Vishal Uppal is the coach of the boys team while Nitin Kirtane is the girls team coach.

“We will get one day to practice. It will be a tough challenge as the ties will be played on grass and our boys and girls do not have much experience on it,” Uppal said.

“But other teams barring Australia do not have much exposure on grasscourts. All the teams will get just a day to practice and that evens out things. The target is to reach the World Group final stage and we are hoping for the the best,” he added.

National hardcourt champion Ratnika said she was confident of her performance. “I have worked on my serve and forehand and I am feeling quite confident before the tie.”

Besides India and hosts Australia, the tournaments feature teams from China, Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, South Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Thailand, Singapore and Uzbekistan.

The 16 boys’ and 16 girls’ teams will play off in a round-robin pool, with the top two teams from the pool of four moving to the quarterfinals April 18.

The semifinals will be on April 19 and finals on April 20.

Each tie comprises two singles and a doubles match.

The four semi-finalists will qualify for the World Finals, to be held September 29-Oct 4 at San Luis Potosi, Mexico.

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