Chennai makes CTL debut

The franchise co-owned by Ishari K Ganesh of Vel’s University and actor Prabhu Deva will play its matches on November 25 and 26 against Hyderabad and Nagpur respectively here at the SDAT tennis stadium.

Vijay Amritraj (second from right) launching the V Chennai Warriors team.   -  S. R. Raghunathan

After a false start last year when the Chennai franchise had to be replaced at the last minute, V Chennai Warriors will put the city on the Champions Tennis League map in the second season starting next week.

The franchise co-owned by Ishari K Ganesh of Vel’s University and actor Prabhu Deva will play its matches on November 25 and 26 against Hyderabad and Nagpur respectively here at the SDAT tennis stadium. The team features Fernando Verdasco, Heather Watson, Vishnu Vardhan and Rainer Schuttler.

Chairman of CTL, Vijay Amritraj said, “I am glad to have the home of tennis in India on the CTL map,” at the launch of the team on Saturday.





For the second year, Bengaluru, Pune and Delhi have dropped out and will be replaced by Chennai, Raipur and Nagpur but Amritraj said it was not a concern for him.

He added there are enough cities that have shown interest to be part of the league and the challenge is to find the right one which can do justice to the event.

“We knew there will be speedbreakers and hiccups and we knew some teams were going to pull out but we hope to learn lessons from the first season.”

Amritaraj said the biggest challenge is the schedule with the ATP and WTA calendar running till November. “The world tour final gets over by November 22 and we can start only after that. We have even increased from 10 days to 14 days for this year.”

Players should decide partners for Rio: Amritraj

With the Olympics next year, the former Indian tennis player said the players should be left to decide who they want to pair up with to avoid the confusion that happened last time around during the London 2012 games.

Amritaraj said, “In doubles I don’t think you have lot of choice with only Leander Paes and Rohan Boppanna but for mixed doubles, it should be left to Sania Mirza who she wants to pair up with as she is high on confidence.”