'AITA can do a lot more for players'

India Davis Cupper Yuki Bhambri on Sunday questioned the desire of All India Tennis Association (AITA) to work for the upcoming players. The question was first thrown to outgoing captain Anand Amritrj on what could be done for the players who are coming up.

“We need to invest more time, money and resources,” Anand said and continued: “The juniors who have been training with us during the ties are 17 and 18 years old.  We need to focus from the age group of 13. Somehow the ability of our boys decreases by the time they reach 20. They are not able to complete against teams like Spian. So it’s about putting more time, money and resources. There is need to have a travelling itinerary, players should be sent to academies like Nick Bollettieri Academy or ASC Sánchez-Casal Tennis Academy for training. Then the private coaches and trainers, so a lot a national federation could do. But do they have the desire?”

On his stint as the Indian captain, Amritraj said: “It’s been wonderful and successful years, where we dominated in the Asian region. Thanks to the boys I had.”

Yuki, a junior Australian Open Champion, agreed with Anand when speaking about the challenges of transition to the senior circuit. “It’s not about whether AITA can but whether they have the desire to do something. Whoever of us has come, it is because of our individual work, and not through a system. That’s why we have players coming once in five or 10 years. So the question is what they are currently doing for the players to come up in India and whether they are even willing,” said Yuki who next plays in a futures event in Chandigarh.

“Whenever we have had the Challenger events in India since 2013, home players have reached the finals or won it. Whether it’s me, or Saketh (Myneni) or Prajnesh, we all have done well. So it’s important that Challengers events take place in India.”

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