Harpal Singh Bedi
Pune: Top-ranked Indian Ramkumar Ramanathan was on Thursday awarded a wildcard into the singles main draw of the 2022 Tata Open Maharashtra to be played at the Balewadi Stadium in Pune from January 31 to February 6.
With this wildcard, the 27-year-old from Chennai has joined compatriot Yuki Bhambri in the main draw.
Ramkumar will also be a part of the doubles main draw with veteran Rohan Bopanna in a week-long fourth edition of the event.
Ramkumar had won his maiden ATP Challenger title in Manama, Bahrain in November last year and regained his position in the Top-200.
In 2017, the lanky Indian had upstaged then World No. 8 Dominic Thiem in straight sets during his first meeting with a Top-10 player.
He will be returning to Pune for his fourth appearance at the South Asia’s only ATP 250 tournament, The Tata Open , consists of a strong line-up this year with top names from the tennis world fighting it out for the title, including World No. 15 Aslan Karatsev, teenage sensation Lorenzo Musetti and defending champion Jiri Vesely among seven Top-100 players.
“I’m extremely happy that tournament organisers are helping me to get into the main draw with a wildcard. The field is quite tough with a lot of good players and it’s not going to be easy but I’m going to give my best efforts and hope to have a good run.”said Ramkumar, who will arrive in the city on Friday.
“These events are good for Indians. Missing one year of Tata Open Maharashtra didn’t feel that good but I’m happy that it came back now. I’m really looking forward to it,” he said
“It’s always great to see Indians starting directly in the main draw and we are happy to give the first wildcard to Ramkumar. He has been doing well recently and is a popular face in the tournament. said Prashant Sutar, Tournament Director of Tata Open Maharashtra.
MSLTA Secretary Sunder Iyer said: “I have followed Ramkumar’s career very closely, he has had some good performances over the years. He was also part of the Davis Cup team. The way he has performed in the recent past, I believe he will make it count this year.”