Anger over non-coverage of Davis Cup, tennis body takes Doordarshan to court

The first two days of February are set to see the Indian contingent host a very formidable Italy on the grass court of South Club in Kolkata but the All India Tennis Association (AITA) fears that this momentous match may not be covered as well like India’s other recent Davis Cup ties. The AITA has thus initiated legal proceedings against Doordarshan in hope of getting results as a consequence of judicial intervention.

The AITA and Doordarshan have an agreement since the year 1997 which is required to be renewed every five years. As per the agreement, DD has the exclusive rights to cover the Davis Cup matches in India and international tournaments, including Challengers and Futures. The last time this agreement was renewed was in 2017 but, according to the AITA, it has not since been honoured by DD.

AITA issued a release yesterday which included the following:

“As per our agreement with DD, AITA cannot approach any other broadcasters. At the same time DD is not confirming whether they are telecasting the (Italy) tie or not. ITF is in continuous correspondence with AITA and is deeply concerned about the status of ‘live’ telecast of the event.

“Having failed to receive any positive response from DD in the last 2 months, AITA has initiated legal proceedings before the Hon’ble High Court against DD asking for specific performance on telecast of Davis Cup tie.”

“In the last one year DD has not been honouring the agreement and has failed to telecast major international events causing a great loss of reputation to the AITA in front of ATP, WTA and ITF,” AITA Secretary General Hironmoy Chatterjee said in a release as quoted by PTI.

The AITA, in their turn, have argued that this is a prestigious tournament for Indian tennis and sports in general and fans should not be deprived of the opportunity to watch it.