Bangalore set to host Davis Cup

Tennis: AITA may allot Indonesia tie to KSLTA

Bangalore looks set to host a Davis Cup tie for the first time in 28 years when Indonesia come visiting in April for the Asia-Oceania Group I relegation play-off contest.

The All India Tennis Association (AITA) is mulling to pick either Bangalore or Indore as the venue for the April 5-7 tie and odds are in favour of Bangalore with the Karnataka State Lawn Tennis Association (KSLTA) having better facilities and experience of hosting international events.

Chennai, Chandigarh and Delhi have already hosted a Davis Cup tie in the recent past and the federation now wants to offer it to other state associations.

“We do not have too many options. We have asked Karnataka and Indore to submit the details about hosting the tie in the next two days. Karnataka will be the preferred venue but they have to first give their consent. We will take a decision accordingly,” a top AITA official told Deccan Herald.

KSLTA sources, meanwhile, said they were ready to host the tournament and the assoation officials plan to meet Deputy Chief Minister R Ashoka on Thursday to seek State government assistance in hosting the tie. India, without 11 of their leading players, had lost the Group I tie 1-4 to South Korea at the R K Khanna stadium last week.

Bangalore last hosted a Davis Cup tie in 1985 against Sweden. A grass court was specially prepared for the tie at the KSLTA Stadium in Cubbon Park for the tie to suit the home team, with the Swedes being well-known clay-court specialists.

Despite that, Sweden powered to a 4-1 victory, with Anders Jarryd, Stefan Edberg and company giving no chance to the Indian team, featuring Vijay Amritraj, Ramesh Krishnan and Anand Amritraj. Sweden had already wrapped up the tie by the second day, winning the first two singles and doubles but Vijay pulled one back for India by beating the then world number one Mats Wilander in the first reverse singles.

The stadium has since then hosted some of the greats of the game including Bjorn Borg and Guillermo Vilas as part of the legends tour while a WTA tournament in 2008 saw the big guns of women’s tennis, including Venus and Serena Williams, displaying their craft in Bangalore. Serena emerged the champion then, beating Patty Schnyder in the final.

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