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Promising Indian doubles pairs granted wild cards for Aircel Chennai Open

677   //    28 Dec 2012, 16:36 IST

Vishnu Vardhan of India plays a return d

Chennai - The organisers of the Aircel Chennai Open 2013 today announced that India’s upcoming tennis players Vishnu Vardhan, Sanam Singh, N Sriram Balaji, and Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan have all been granted wild card entries into the doubles draw of the $430,000 tennis tournament to be held here from December 31, 2012 to January 6, 2013. The wild card entry into the tournament is a significant recognition of the talent the four players possess.

Vishnu Vardhan, who will be joining forces with Sanam Singh, has played singles as well as doubles matches for India against New Zealand in the Davis Cup. He has also played in the London Olympics with Paes and paired up with Sania Mirza for the mixed doubles. 24-year-old Sanam Singh is a Davis Cup player and Gold Medallist in the Asian Games of 2012. His inclusion into the doubles draw comes on the back of 5 International Tennis Federation Futures titles in 2012. Vishnu receives financial support from the Tamil Nadu Tennis Association (TNTA), and together with Sanam the pair could be a strong doubles pair of the future for India.

The Tamil Nadu duo of N Sriram Balaji and Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan receive support from TNTA and have improved their rankings substantially in 2012. If they continue to perform well, the pair could break into the top 200 in 2013. They also have the potential to become a top-25 doubles team.

The organisers had announced earlier that the country’s top doubles specialist players, Leander Paes, Mahesh Bhupathi, and Rohan Bopanna will be participating in the season-opener. With the inclusion of four more Indian players, the doubles section will see a strong contingent from the country battle for the title. Bhupathi will be teaming up with World No.5 doubles player Canada’s Daniel Nestor, while World No. 12 Bopanna will partner US-based Rajeev Ram, and World No. 3 Paes will take to the court with new partner Edouard Roger Vasselin of France.

Mr. Karti P Chidambaram, Chairman – Tournament Organising Committee, Vice President – AITA & TNTA said: “Players such as Vishnu Vardhan, Sanam, Balaji and Nedunchezhiyan represent the future of Indian tennis. There is no doubt that they hold a lot of promise and the wild cards encourage them and recognise that fact. We are hopeful that they will do very well in the Aircel Chennai Open 2013 due to start on Monday.”

“We are glad that two doubles pairs from India have been granted wild card entries into the tournament. This will definitely be a huge opportunity for these youngsters and knowing that they hold promise we will not be surprised if they perform very well and even upset some of the veterans,” said tournament director Tom Annear.

The field has an impressive line-up of 4 players from the top 20. Apart from the Czech Republic’s Berdych (No.6) who played a lead role in the recent Davis Cup final win, the grid includes Janko Tipsarevic (No.9), twice winner Marin Cilic (No.15) and Stanislas Wawrinka (No.17).

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