Panel to mull over Bhupathi selection

Panel to mull over Bhupathi selection

Davis Cup team to be picked today

Panel to mull over Bhupathi selection

 The selection of doubles combination will be the moot point for the All India Tennis Association (AITA) selection committee when it meets here on Wednesday to pick the squad for India’s upcoming Davis Cup World Group play-off tie against Serbia.

With doubles exponent Mahesh Bhupathi said to be available for selection for the tie, beginning September 12 in Bangalore, the committee will have to take a call on whether to go with his experience or keep their faith on the young crop.

Expectedly, the committee is divided on that. But non-playing captain Anand Amitraj, who is in the US, is likely to hold a chat with Bhupathi before relaying the final decision to the selection committee. His absence from the court in the recent months and subsequent dip in the rankings, however, may go against him, feel some selectors.

Davis Cup coach Zeeshan Ali, though, would be happy to have Bhupathi, now that Leander Paes has also excused himself from the tie owing to personal reasons.“But we still have a lot of options. Everyone else has made himself available for the selection, including Bhupathi. We would love to have him and the kind of experience he brings along with him.  However, he has not been playing much for the last 3-4 months and that we will have to consider, if he is match fit. We also have a good option in Saketh Myneni who has combined well with Rohan (Bopanna),” Zeeshan told Deccan Herald.

Somdev Devvarman and Yuki Bhambri will be shouldering the responsibility in the singles. Zeeshan, particularly, was happy with the final appearance of Yuki, who is returning from an injury, in ITF $15,000 event in Edwardsville, Illinois, this week. “It was very reassuring to see him giving such performance in just his second tournament after injury. We still have a month to go, hopefully he will be back to his best by then.”

Apart from them,  Sanam Singh (ranked 391), Jeevan Nedunchiziyan (297) and Ramanathan Ramkumar (305) will also be hoping to get a look in.