Tamil Nadu Tennis Association President and former Indian tennis legend Vijay Amritraj on Monday announced that Chennai is highly likely to host a WTA 250 event later in the year.
Last week, the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu in the State assembly announced that efforts are being made to revive the Chennai Open tennis tournament.
Speaking after the TNTA’s annual day event, Amritraj said, “I had a very good meeting with the honourable Chief Minister and he wants an event this year. Fingers crossed we will be able to make an announcement soon regarding this.”
Amritraj added he has been in discussions with the WTA already about this for a while now and said there is a lot of interest to hold more events in India from WTA, APT and ITF.
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“We will start with a WTA tour 250 event this year and hopefully get an ATP event next year. Chennai has not had a women’s event and it is important for us to encourage the girls in the State,” said Amritraj.
On the possible window for an event, Amritraj said, “we are tight on weather dates so we either have to do it in the first three months of the year or before the rains commence. So around September to October is the window we are looking at.”
Regarding a possible ATP event, the former Davis Cup captain said it will be independent of the ATP event in Pune and said it will be better if the event in Chennai could follow the Maharashtra Open.
Amritraj also explained that the event will be supported by a combination of public and private sponsorships. “We want the blessing of the CM and then it is up to us to go out and execute the most spectacular event. We want to put the city and state front and centre globally. The courts have been done. We will be redoing the seats and sprucing up the stadium as well. The bottom line is Chennai will be on the tennis map.”