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Tennis

Sumit Nagal opts for Challengers in India, Skips South American Clay Tourneys

Sumit Nagal opts for Challengers in India, skipping South American clay tourneys, expressing excitement about playing in front of home fans and acknowledging the challenge of facing a qualifier in the opening round.

Sumit Nagal Tennis
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Not very long ago, Sumit Nagal, India's top singles professional, hinted at quitting owing to a lack of financial support (File photo)

By

The Bridge Desk

Published: 5 Feb 2024 9:04 AM GMT

Second-seeded Sumit Nagal has decided to skip the South American Clay Tourneys to participate in the Chennai Open Challenger, followed by appearances in the Bengaluru Open, Pune Open, and Delhi Open Challengers as per Times of India. Expressing excitement about playing in front of home fans, Nagal acknowledges the challenge of facing a qualifier in the opening round.

Last year's Chennai Open Challenger marked the beginning of a remarkable season for Nagal, who entered as a qualifying wildcard and reached the semifinals. This impressive run fueled his rise, culminating in winning two Challenger titles by the end of the year, propelling him into the top 150.

After a strong start to the 2024 season, reaching the second round of the Australian Open, Nagal highlights the privilege of playing Challengers in India. Nagal is looking forward to the challenge of the opening round against a qualifier, recognizing the difficulty as qualifiers carry momentum from playing two matches.

While Nagal initially registered for South American clay tournaments, the clash with the Challengers schedule in India led him to reconsider. "I was not sure where to play initially. Rather than going far away and competing, I wanted to play in India. Playing on clay has been my strength but since I don't get to play much at home, I decided to compete in India," Nagal told TOI.

In the singles section, other notable Indian players include Ramkumar Ramanathan and Sasikumar Mukund, both receiving main draw wildcard entries. Ramkumar, instrumental in India's Davis Cup World Group Stage II win over Pakistan, will partner with Saketh Myneni in the doubles category.

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