The SOA University, in association with the Odisha Tennis Association (OTA), will host the AITA-OTA Men’s Ranking Tennis tournament, 2013 and AITA-OTA Under-14 (Boys and Girls) Championship Series Tennis Tournament beginning from September 23 at the newly-laid synthetic tennis courts in the University campus in the city here.
The 12-day event is expected to be inaugurated by former Junior Wimbledon champion and Davis Cupper Ramesh Krishnan on September 22.
While the Under-14 tournament will be held from September 23 to 27, 2013, the men’s tournament will be played from September 30 to October 4, 2013. Both the tournaments will be preceded by a qualifying round due to high participation.
In the men’s category, which will have singles and doubles competitions, more than 50 players from 17 states will participate in the tournament. The states to be represented in the tournament are West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Assam, Chhattisgarh, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Haryana, Chandigarh, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, besides hosts Odisha.
Suraj R Prabodh from Karnataka, ranked 28th in the country, will be the top seed for the men’s tournament.
Odisha’s challenge will be led by second seed Chinmay Pradhan (all India rank 46) and Santosh Kumar Mallick (all India rank 123).
The winner will get 20 points, besides prize money of Rs 6,500 while the runners-up will get 15 points with a cash prize of Rs 4,500.
55 budding tennis players from nine states (Jharkhand, Bihar, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Haryana, Assam and hosts Odisha) will participate In the Under-14 category.
Amit Beniwal of Haryana (all India rank 35) has been top seeded for the boys’ singles event in the Under-14 category while Karnataka’s Muskaan Rajan is the top seed for the Under-14 girls’ singles event.
In the Boys’ Under-14 section, eight players from Odisha have found place in the main draw with Nishant Kumar (all India rank 61) and Swastik Pradhan (all India rank 82) being seeded number two and three respectively.
Four girls from Odisha, including Alisha Samal (all India rank 92) and Rutuparna Choudhury (all India rank 112), who have been seeded number four and five respectively, will be playing in the main draw.
The winners and runner-up in the Under-14 category will get 25 and 20 points respectively.
The University’s synthetic courts were laid recently alongside the synthetic basketball court to facilitate and promote tennis and basketball among the around 10,000 students of the University and sports enthusiasts in the state.