"It's a shame," says Somdev on Bopanna's Arjuna Award snub

The AITA had nominated Saketh Myneni and sent Rohan Bopanna's name only on June 14, well after the April 28 deadline. 

Rohan Bopanna was left flustered when his name did not feature in the final list of the approved Arjuna award nominees.    -  M. Prabhu

Indian tennis star, Rohan Bopanna, who reached a career high ranking of World No. 3 in doubles 2013, has lashed out at the All India Tennis Association (AITA) for not including his name in the list of Arjuna award nominees within the stipulated deadline. 

The AITA had nominated Saketh Myneni and sent Bopanna's name only on June 14, well after the April 28 deadline. The 37-year-old was left flustered when his name did not feature in the final list of the approved Arjuna award nominees. 

WATCH: Arjuna Award nominees

Bopanna won the 2017 French Open mixed doubles title with Canadian partner Gabriela Dabrowski and had also finished fourth at the 2016 Rio Olympics mixed doubles along with Sania Mirza, but these feats did not prove to be worthy enough.

Davis Cup team-mate, Somdev Devvarman expressed his disappointment in the manner the situation was handled. “I think it's a shame to be honest. Rohan should have got this award maybe seven or eight years back. Back then he had already won tournaments and was playing fantastic Davis Cup matches for India in singles also back then.”

“It's unfortunate that it has been overlooked – it's unfortunate that it has happened the way it has. Rohan's a strong-headed guy, I think he knows he deserves it. I'm sure he's upset about it but hopefully he'll get it soon.”

Former Davis Cup captain, Anand Amritraj said, “In 2014 he asked me – in my first year as captain – to write him a letter of recommendation for the Arjuna Award and I wrote him a very good one. I said he was number three in the world at the time and he'd won a few Masters 1000 tournaments. There was absolutely no reason why he shouldn't have got it. I was very surprised that he didn't get it.”

AITA had instead nominated Saketh Myneni – who won a gold medal in mixed doubles and a silver medal in men's doubles at the 2014 Incheon Asian Games – and stuck to the deadline. 

Devvarman and Amritraj both felt
that Saket deserved the nomination. “All of that being said, I'm very happy for Saket – he is a good guy and one of the nicer guys on the Indian tennis tour. Everybody loves him,” said Devvarman. “The fact he's got it is fantastic, so lets not take anything away from him. It's just unfortunate about Bops.” 

“Everybody in the tennis fraternity knows that Rohan Bopanna is a fantastic player, so hopefully he gets it,” added Devvarman.