(Last Updated on : 15-07-2017)
Lawn Tennis in India is one of the popular sports of India. It is a game which can be played either indoors or outdoors on a rectangular court by two persons (in singles) or by four of the same sex (women's and men's double) or by men and women partners (mixed doubles). Contrasting to Cricket
, Lawn Tennis has failed to get the hold of the masses in India and still, after 120 years of its beginning, it remains a game for the influential class.
History of Lawn Tennis in India
The game was brought to India by the British
Army and civilian officers. Some of the most notable tennis tournaments in the history
of the game in the India include Punjab Lawn Tennis Championship held at Lahore in 1885, Bengal Lawn Tennis Championship held at Kolkata
in 1887 and the All India Tennis Championships organized at Allahabad
in 1910. In the early years, when the Indians were habituated with tennis, the British players dominated the championships. The earliest All India Championships in Tennis were held in 1910, in which both men and women
Development of Lawn Tennis in India
The year 1910 was the beginning of the development of lawn tennis in India in which both men and women took part. B.K Nehru in 1905 and Sardar Nihal Singh in 1908 and later M Saleem, Fayzee brothers with Jagat Mohan Lal made it to last 16 steps at the Wimbledon. Ghaus Mohammad was the first Indian to make in the quarterfinals at Wimbledon in 1939. In the 1960s, the Lawn Tennis observed a golden period. Ramanathan Krishnan
received his top rank – No. 4 in Wimbledon in 1962. India continually became the Zonal Champions in the Davis Cup. Ramanathan Krishnan, along with Premjit Lal, SP Misra, Jaidip and RK Khanna as the non-playing captain, pushed India to the Cup finals in 1966.
In the 1970s, Vijay Amritraj
with his teammates Sashi Menon, Jasjit Singh
and Anand Amritraj brothers took India to World Cup Finals for the second time in 1974. Moreover, Vijay also made it to the quarterfinals of US Open in 1973 and 198, Wimbledon in 1973 and 1974. The son of Ramanathan Krishnan, Ramesh Krishnan
won the junior Wimbledon championship and junior French Open title in 1979 and was ranked number 1 junior in the world. He made it to the quarterfinals at Wimbledon (1986) as US Open twice. India won their first Grand Slam title at the French open in the Mixed Doubles in 1997. Although, none of the Indian player has won a Grand Slam Singles title in the Men's or Women's category so far.
won the Wimbledon Championship in 1999, 2003, 2008, 2009, 2010 and in 2015 in the category of Mixed Doubles. In the Mixed Doubles, Sania Mirza
won the title of US Open in 2014, French Open in 2012 and Australian Open in 2009. Mahesh Bhupathi
won the title of French Open and US Open in the category of Mixed Doubles. Leander Paes
and Mahesh Bhupathi won the French Open and Wimbledon together. Sania Mirza won the Wimbledon in 2015 in Women's Doubles. Sumit Nagal
won the Wimbledon in 2015 in Boys' Doubles.
Tournaments of Lawn Tennis in India
The maiden Inter Provincial Tournament was held in 1922 with Punjab Lawn Tennis Association directed by Mohd Saleem. The All India Lawn Tennis Association
settled on to arrange the Grass Court and Hard Court Tournaments in India. The first Grass Court National Championship was held at Kolkata in 1946 and Sumant Misra
clutched the maiden title.
Now a day there are number of tournaments held in India and these are as follows:
Bangalore Open: It was a professional women's tennis tournament held in Bengaluru, Karnataka from 2003 through to 2008 by The Canara Bank. It was a Women's Tennis Association Tour event which was played on outdoor hard courts.
Royal Indian Open: The Royal Indian Open was a competition organized for female proficient tennis players, played on outdoor hard courts. It made its debut in 2012, in Pune.
QNet Open: The QNet Open was a tournament for professional female tennis players played on outdoor hard courts. It was held only once in New Delhi in 2014.
Kingfisher Airlines Tennis Open: The Kingfisher Airlines Tennis Open is a professional men's tennis tournament played on outdoor hard courts. It was held annually in Bengaluru.
Sunfeast Open: The Sunfeast Open was a tennis tournament that was started in Kolkata in 2005. The tournament was a Tier III-tournament was played on indoors greenset.
Shriram Capital P.L. Reddy Memorial Challenger: It is at present a part of the Association of Tennis Professionals Challenger Tour. It is a professional tennis tournament played on outdoor hard courts.
Delhi Open: It is held yearly at the R.K. Khanna Tennis Complex in New Delhi since 2014. The Delhi Open which was formerly known as ONGC-GAIL Delhi Open is a professional tennis tournament that is played on outdoor hard courts. It is currently part of the Association of Tennis Professionals Challenger Tour and the ITF Women's Circuit.
Emami Kolkata Open ATP Challenger Tour: It is held yearly at the Bengal Tennis Association Stadium in Kolkata since 2014. It is currently part of the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) Challenger Tour.
NECC-ITF Women's Tennis Championships: It is held yearly at the Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex in Pune since 2001. The NECC-ITF Women's Tennis Tournament is a tennis tournament on the ITF Women's Circuit, under the tier of the WTA Tour that is played on outdoor hard-courts.
KPIT MSLTA Challenger: It is now a part of the Association of Tennis Professionals Challenger Tour. The KPIT MSLTA Challenger is a professional tennis tournament played on outdoor hard courts.
All India Tennis Association
The All India Tennis Association (AITA) is the foremost body of tennis in India. It was founded in 1920 and associated by International Tennis Federation and Asian Tennis Federation. All India Tennis Association runs all of the Indian national representative tennis sides, including the India Davis Cup
team and the India Fed Cup team. AITA is also organises and hosts tennis tournaments within India and setting up the home international equipment. AITA conducts the following types of tournaments:
Two Nationals - Hard Court and Clay
The AITA has its headquarters in Delhi's R.K. Khanna Tennis Complex. Until 1996, the administration was functioning from provisional places like Kolkata, Delhi and Chennai
Famous Lawn Tennis players in India
India has formed some very brilliant tennis players over the years, including both men and women. Some of the Famous Lawn Tennis players in India are as follows:
The lawn tennis in India is shining well but it needs much more encouragement from the people of the country. If the players are given more respect and facility like in cricket, India can reach the top soon.