Pune: India’s Prajnesh Gunneswaran and Arjun Kadhe were on Saturday handed wildcard entries into the singles main draw at the 2022 Tata Open Maharashtra to be held at the Balewadi Stadium in Pune from January 31 to February 6.
Prajnesh and Arjun joined Yuki Bhambri and Ramkumar Ramanathan in the singles main draw of the tournament, where as many as four Indians will be seen in action.
Local boy Arjun, who clinched his maiden national title in 2020, and 2018 Asian Games medallist Prajnesh have featured in all three last editions of South East Asia’s only ATP 250 tournament.
The much-awaited Tata Open Maharashtra, one of India’s oldest sporting tournaments, is being organised by the Maharashtra State Lawn Tennis Association (MSLTA) and sponsored by the Tata Group.
“We are happy to announce Arjun and Prajnesh as wildcards and it’s great to see four Indians in the main draw. Arjun is from Pune and Prajnesh has also been among the popular names at the tournament. Though the field is strong, I believe these wildcards will help Indians start stronger as we also aim to give our players much-needed opportunities through this event,” said Prashant Sutar, Tournament Director of Tata Open Maharashtra.
With the presence of top names from the world, including World No. 15 Aslan Karatsev, defending champion Jiri Vesely and the former Youth Olympics champion Kamil Majchrazak, the upcoming fourth edition of the tournament is set to witness a week filled with breathtaking tennis action.
“Both Arjun and Prajnesh are excellent players. Currently they are among the top Indian international players and having them at the Tata Open Maharashtra means they will have an opportunity to play against top players in home conditions. Due to limited events, our players don’t often get to play at home but now this is their chance and I’m sure they will make the most of it,” MSLTA Secretary Sunder Iyer said.
In the last edition of the event, Prajnesh made it to the pre-quarterfinals while 28-year-old Arjun suffered a defeat against eventual champion Vesely.
The tournament is owned by IMG and operated by RISE Worldwide in India. The qualifying rounds will be played on January 30 and 31.