ATP CHALLENGER 100 MEN’S INTERNATIONAL TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIP 2023
SDAT Tennis Stadium, 13th-19th February 2023
Chennai has become the International Sports Hub of India and is the talk of the town among the sports community in the country. Few months ago the Chess Olympiad was held in a grand manner in Chennai and it was followed by another major International Sports event – Chennai Open WTA250 Women International Tennis Championship. Now Chennai is to host the first ever ATP Challenger 100 event – Chennai Open ATP Challenger 100 Men’s International Tennis Championship from 13th February 2023 at the well maintained and well known SDAT Tennis Stadium in Nungambakkam.
This has been only made possible because of the broad vision of our Honorable Chief Minister Thiru. M.K.Stalin to promote and develop the sports in the State. The impact this will have on the State will be immense not only in terms of sports and health of the public at large itself but also in terms of growth of economy and commerce of the State. Since he took over recently, Thiru. Udayanidhi Stalin, Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports Development in taking strong steps to implement that vision and this is to be appreciated. While the Women event was the first of its kind to be held in Chennai and returned to India after a gap of 14 years, this Challenger Men’s event returns to the city after 4 years.
Tennis activity has picked up in the State. Since the conduct of the WTA event in September last, 32 official ranking tournaments have been held or are to be held in 28 weeks starting December 2022 till June 2023 in various districts of the State to inspire young players and popularize the game. Vijay Amritraj, the Indian Tennis Legend and President TNTA is closely coordinating with International Tennis bodies to get the best possible international tennis to India with the aim of providing Indian Players home advantage to prove their talent and an opportunity to the sports lovers in India to watch best tennis action in their own backyard.
Vijay in his remarks said, ” I congratulate the Honorable Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Thiru. M.K.Stalin and his whole team for supporting such events and encouraging the sports culture in the State. I whole heartedly thank the Government of Tamil Nadu for their consistent support. I must mention that The Sports Development Authority of Tamil Nadu (SDAT) is leaving no stone unturned in making sure the facilities are upto the standards. The Challenger event is a home opportunity to top tennis players of India to perform and improve on their international rankings. The fact that there are three such events in the country in Chennai, Bengaluru and Pune is a huge opportunity. This also show cases and enhances Chennai as a major international destination. I thank the press for their excellent coverage of Tennis in the past and request you to give this event extensive coverage. I look forward to our Indians doing well. I am delighted to welcome my friend Bjorn Borg and his wife Patricia on their first visit to Chennai and wish them a lovely stay here. I am sure they will carry back excellent memories. We have had intense rivalry and memorable moments on court but we also had memorable moments off court as friends.”
Players from 19 countries besides India are participating and the competition is going to be stiff. Chun Hsin Tseng from Taipei, ranked 115 in the world is the top seed. He faces the Croatian Nino Serdarusic in the first round. He is followed by James Duckworth from Australia, who seems to have comparatively easier first round match against a qualifier. The other strong contenders are third seeded Peniston Ryan of Great Britain, Austrian Sebastian Ofner, the talented 19 year old Luca Nardi of Italy (ranked 162), a three time ATP Challenger tournament winner, Dimitar Kuzmanov of Bulgaria ( ranked 182) who has been around for a while, 26 year old Sebastian Ofner of Austria( ranked 193) who reached the third round at Wimbledon 2022 and Mikhail Kukushkin of Kazakistan, who is familiar to Indian Tennis fans. Max Purcell, the Wimbledon doubles Champion in 2022 is also in the fray in both – singles and doubles events.
Wildcards in the Main Draw have been given to Prajnesh Gunneswaran, Ramkumar Ramanathan and Leo Borg. Local favourite Prajnesh Gunneswaran has had good run recently and will be fancying his chances agaisnt Jay Clarke of Great Britain, while Ramkumar Ramanathan has the talent to upset the best and he is up against the 8th seeded Dimitar Kuzmanov of Bulgaria. 12 Indians are participating – 2 in the Main Draw and 10 in the Qualifying event.
In the Doubles draw Jeevan Nedunchezian and Shriram Balaji, who had a good run in the Australian Open, get the top billing and start as the favourites. If all goes accoding to script they would finally run into the second seeded Australians, Max Purcel and Marc Polmans .
Andrey Kornilov is the ATP Suprevisor, Sheetal Iyer is the Referee and Paul Sarvanan is the Chief of Umpires for he tournament.
In the last ATP Challenger event held in 2019 in Chennai, Corentin Moutet of France won the event and went on to do well for himself reaching a career high ranking of 51 in the subsequent years.
The main draw consists of 32 players – 23 direct acceptances, 3 wild cards, 6 qualifiers. Qualifying consists of 24 players with 4 wild cards. The doubles draw consists of 16 entries – 10 advanced entries, 4 from onsite entries and 2 wild cards .
The doubles finals are to be played on Saturday the 18th February while the Singles finals are slated for Sunday, 19th February. The event will be shown live streamed across the world on the ATP website and DD sports are to telecast live the semifinals and finals of the event.
The prize money for the event is USD 130000 (Rs.1.06 crores). The winner will receive 100 ATP ranking points and USD 17650 ( Rs. 14.47 lakhs) and the runner up 60 ATP points and USD 10,380 ( Rs. 8.5 lakhs) the first round loser receives USD1270 (Rs.1.04 lakhs). The qualifiers also receive a incentive of USD 380 ( Rs.31,000/-).
The players are to be hosted at The Park – the official hotel. Other partners are ACT Fibernet – Connectivity Partner, Kauvery Hospital – Medical Partner, Chennai Live – Digital App partner and Realty Media – Content Production Partner.
Most importantly, entry for spectators to witness the matches is free. The timings of play will be from 10am onwards. Shade for spectators has been provided in the stands. The tournament is looking forward to the the sports and tennis fans enjoying enthralling tennis during the week.
|DATES||Men’s Qualifying: 12th February 2023 |
Men’s Main Draw: 13th to 19th February 2023
|SINGLES FINAL |
|Sunday 19thFebruary 2023 |
Saturday 18th February 2023
|DRAW SIZE||32 Singles Main Draw/16 Doubles Main Draw |
24 Singles Qualifying Draw
|COURT SURFACE||Hard (Play Pave)|
|TOURNAMENT BALL||WILSON PRO TOUR|
|TNTA HON.SECRETARY||PREMKUMAR KARRA|
|TOURNAMENT DIRECTOR||HITEN JOSHI|