Vijay Amritraj elected TNTA president

Speaking at the Tamil Nadu Tennis Association's Annual General Meeting, he spoke of the importance of focusing on the “next generation of players” and added that efforts will be made to improve the sport in the districts.

Vijay Amritraj speaking at the Tamil Nadu Tennis Association's Annual General Meeting.   -  Special Arrangement

Indian tennis legend Vijay Amritraj was elected the new president of the Tamil Nadu Tennis Association (TNTA) at its Annual General Meeting (AGM) held at the Madras Cricket Club here on Thursday.

Speaking at the event, he said, “My father Robert Amritraj was a TNTA council member from 1972-80. So, it’s a very special privilege to take that legacy forward. I also commend the outgoing administrators for their role in keeping up the promotion of the sport during their tenure."

“I’m aware the expectations will be high. Tennis in the country needs a new fillip for a better standard. Our team will do its best to give that fillip. Concrete plans will be firmed up shortly. At this point, I would like to request the support of all in all the endeavours of the Association.”

Asked what prompted his decision to take up the responsibility, he said, “I had a wonderful chat with Karti (Chidambaram), (Vijay) Sankar and everyone else. And, there’s this legacy, history, and nostalgia here. It’s the 96th AGM and I’m the 12th president, if I’m not mistaken. Some of the greatest players of the country have come from this State (Tamil Nadu). In 1987, we were fortunate to have all four Davis Cup members from this State. Thus, when approached to consider this (the responsibility), I weighed all the pros and cons, and I think we have a good team.”

He spoke of the importance of focusing on the “next generation of players”, especially children who might consider taking up a sport to get into good colleges. He added that efforts will be made to improve the sport in the districts - he said that with the help of the State government and the local authorities it will be seen if there is a way to get better courts and facilities there.

Indian players have to improve fitness, he said, adding, “Fitness, especially of the lower part of the body, is an important aspect. You’ve got to play the 20th ball like you play the 2nd ball. And that’s where we struggle quite a bit. Because, our boys and girls tend to pull the trigger too early in a point.”

He also said that he "thinks there is a possibility" of creating a centre of excellence.

The new office-bearers will serve a three-year term until 2021.


The office-bearers

President: Vijay Amritraj

Vice presidents: A. Vellayan, Karti P. Chidambaram, Vijay Sankar, Haresh Ramachandran

Secretary: Prem Kumar Karra

Treasurer: Vivek Reddy

Councillors: Jasper Cornelius, M. Chander, Shivkumar Palani, K. Vidyashankar, T.V. Subramaniyam, Murali Padmanabhan, B. Venkatasubramaniam, K. Suresh, Sai Jayalakshmi, Anuradha Ravishankar, G. Vairavan, K. Madhubalan, Manoj Chandani, K. Shivaram Selvakkumar


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