Balasore, December 24(Odisha.in) The All India Tennis Association (AITA) championship tournament for under-14 (boys and girls) had a colourful start at the Modern Public School ground in Balasore on Sunday.
The championship tournament organized for the first time in Balasore was kicked off by tournament director and Collector of Balasore Dr Alekh Chandra Padhiary.
The tournament, which is being organized by Balasore Tennis Association (BTA) under the auspices of the Orissa Tennis Association, would continue till December 27.
Speaking on this occasion, Padhiary stressed upon promotional and developmental activities need for the growth of tennis in the State.
“Gone are the days when less-number of children were interested for the sports, particularly tennis. Now in India there are a number of sports icons of international standards. Girls like Sania Mirza and boys like Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupati have proved themselves in this sport,” he said.
He advised players to take such tournaments with sportsmanship sprit and don’t demoralize themselves at the loss.
Balasore MLA Arun Dey and SP Yashwant Jethwa congratulated the organisres for conducting a tennis tournament of national level in the coastal district.
Industrialist Himanshu Das and secretary of BTA S D Bhanj also spoke on this occasion.
According to the organisers, 43 boys and 16 girls from Orissa, Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal, Jharkhand, Tamilnadu, Assam, Punjab and Gujrat had participated in the qualifying round.
“Of them 32 boys and 16 girls have been selected for the main draw, which will be conducted from Monday at three tennis courts – two at modern public school campus and one at Station club,” informed tournament coordinator Saurav Behera.
Eight ‘seeded’ players from boys wing and two ‘seeded’ from girls wing are participating in the tournament.
The boys included no. 1 seeded Surya Pawan (Andhra Pradesh), 2 – Anshu Kumar Bhuyan (Orissa), 3 – S Reddy (Tamilnadu), 4 – M Gomes (Delhi), 5– N Rebello (AP), 6 – S Guha (West Bengal), 7 – R Somani (AP) and 8 –
H Gurnani (WB).
The girls included no. 1 seeded Surya Tejaswini (AP) and Siuli Upadhyay (Orissa).