Mumbai: Ramkumar Ramanathan was on Wednesday handed a wild card for the men's singles main draw of the Tata Open Maharashtra and the organisers may grant a similar entry to veteran Leander Paes in the men's doubles event.
India's top two singles players, Prajnesh Gunnewaran and rising star Sumit Nagal, who claimed fame by taking a set off Roger Federer at the 2019 US Open, have entered the main draw on their own.
For 25-year-old Ramkumar, who has sipped to 185 in the ranking ladder, will make his third appearance at India's only ATP 250 event in Pune from 3 February.
"There are three singles wild cards for the main draw of which we have announced one for Ramkumar. We are yet to decide on the other two wild-card entrants," said Tournament Director Prashant Sutar.
"First time it has happened that two India players have made to the main draw of the tournament with a direct entry. We wish that an Asian or an Indian wins this tournament," he added.
According to Sutar, legendary Paes, who has announced that 2020 will be the final season of his career, has also made a request for a wild card entry into the men's doubles event and it will be considered in a "positive" manner.
MSLTA President Bharat Oza said they have received requests for wildcards from players who lost early at the Australian Open and they will soon make a call.
Surprisingly, Rohan Bopanna and Divij Sharan, who won this tournament last year together, are not teaming up this year. Bopanna is also seeking a wild card entry with local lad Arjun Kadhe and so is Purav Raja with Ramkumar.
Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan and N Balaji have also sought wild card entries, making it tough for the organisers to take a call since there are only two wild card entries for the doubles event.
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Updated Date: Feb 03, 2020 22:04:54 IST