PDPU Open Tennis Championship will witness 200+ players from all over India.
It is undeniable that sports are a religion in India, 1.3 billion hearts beat in unison every time India is playing at the world stage. Over time, India has embraced many a sport and harboured many an ardent fan who follow their favourite sport and sportspersons across the globe.
Tennis is no exception. Brought to India by the British during their rule, Lawn Tennis is one of the most widely followed sports in the country. A closer look often reveals some interesting facts such as the number of ‘Fedal’ fans in India outnumber the number of their own fans in their respective countries combined, although our sheer population explains this endowment.
Sports have always brought Indians closer. The competition, the palpitation and the anticipation of glory have united Indians time and time again. Moreover, just like the unique face of our cultural identity, we, Indians take pride in our individuality, and celebrate individual glory with just as much fervor as team sports. Few names come to mind that better illustrate this than Tennis.
The recollection of the grace of Vijay Amritraj, as he beat the legendary Rod Laver and the mercurial Jimmy Connors and Mats Vilander is a story till date our parents and grandparents love telling us, at a time when people followed their matches on the radio.
Watching Prakash and Stephen Amritraj play on the ATP circuit makes us go back in time and visualize the Vijay and Anand Amritraj lethal camaraderie, reaching two Davis Cup finals, having forfeited one against the Proteans to decry Apartheid.
Now, we sit on the edge of our seats and leap with joy when Leander Paes at 43 still glorifies the doubles courts. The young blood of Sania Mirza and Somdev Devvarman now carry the hopes of a billion people.
A pressing query that comes to mind, often, however is:
Why does consistent glory elude us? Can the second largest population in the world not produce a bunch of players in every generation that can challenge for the crown year in year out? Can we not produce players that are out there, returning Federer's class and Nadal's ferocity?
The answers are unclear, and the reasons are many. The one that is clear to us, however, is the dearth of platforms for young players to compete and hone their skills.
Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University, Gandhinagar, has pledged to be a part of the process of change. The PDPU Open Tennis Championship is the first event of its kind to be organized on such a large scale by a group of university students in Gujarat, around 200 players from across the country will compete for a total prize money of INR 1, 00,000 in three categories – Men’s Singles, Men’s Doubles and Women’s Singles for a tenure of 6 Days starting 21st of October till 26th October.
Naman Shah, the chief organiser of POTC said, "My aim for this year’s POTC is to have a healthy competition between the players. Also, I hope the players enjoy the tournament and learn from each point they play.”