Making a mountain out of a molehill?


For more than 10 years, Vijay Amritraj (in pic) had been a constant at the ATP Chennai Open draw ceremony, his presentation skills, knowledge and humour enlivening the atmosphere. This time, however, his absence created a huge ripple in the media. Vijay was replaced by Karti P. Chidambaram, the new Chairman of the organising committee of the Aircel 2010 Open.

“Though I was not invited, I am not hurt,” said Vijay while addressing the media. He said the event was more important than individuals and despite “minor scratches and blips” it was imperative that people worked together as a unit. “Let’s not make a mountain out of a molehill,” he said.

“I was responsible for bringing this event to the city and served as a non-executive chairman of the tournament. I will always be available if my help is required,” Vijay added.

Vijay, unwittingly, became a part of another controversy too. A Delhi-based newspaper reported that Vijay earned double the prize money of the singles winner for each edition of the Chennai Open. Vijay, though, clarified that the $140,000 he receives as ‘consultancy fee’ from the International Management Group (IMG) is as per the annual contract and not just for the Chennai Open alone.

C. B. N. Reddy, Secretary of the Tamil Nadu Tennis Association, said that if IMG had been paying Vijay the amount ($140,000) for 12 tournaments out of this single event then it raises more questions than answers.

Compiled by K. Keerthivasan