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Updated January 16th, 2024 at 19:56 IST

'Why are all tennis players going & living outside India': Nagal's anger towards AITA comes to fore

Sumit Nagal talks about Indian Tennis following the win over Alexander Bublik in the first round of the Australian Open 2024. Nagal intends to bring change.

Prateek Arya
Sumit Nagal after winning match at Australian Open
Sumit Nagal after winning match at Australian Open | Image:AP/PTI
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With the win over World No. 27, Alexander Bublik, Sumit Nagal has caught the attention of the world and is receiving praise from all of India for advancing to the second round of the Australian Open 2024. The victory comes as a major boost for the 26-year-old, who a few months ago was distraught over his financial state of affairs. The positive results on the court have certainly bettered his financial condition, plus seemingly given him the cushion to suggest changes to the All India Tennis Association (AITA).

3 things you need to know

  • Sumit Nagal defeated Alexander Bublik in the first round of the Australian Open 2024
  • Nagal won in straight sets
  • Sumit Nagal will return to action on Thursday, January 18, 2024

Also Read | Last time it happened was in 1989: Sumit Nagal rewrites history books

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Sumit Nagal vows to bring change to Indian tennis

Over the course of its long history, Indian tennis has witnessed countless cases of Singles players resorting to feature in the doubles category, after initially making an impact in the solo vertical. Sania Mirza, Rohan Bopanna, and now Yuki Bhambri, come as popular mentions. However, Sumit Nagal has no intention to follow their footsteps. Following the win in the Australian Open first round, India's No.1 has cut out an enthusiastic figure, promising to create an impact in the Singles catalogue.

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“If you look at it, there was a time when we had a lot of singles players playing in the slams. I feel like we are missing quite a bit in the last few years, & my goal is to change that in the next years, when I stop tennis, whenever I stop tennis, I hope I can put an impact on the country where we can change the system & have people playing in the singles draw as well.”

Also Read | Australian Open 2024 witness bizarre scenes as player rushes to throw up

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Nagal suggests a complete overhaul

Though he made his objective clear, he also did not shy away from saying that to see a positive transition in the case, a huge transition in the system will be needed. Nagal wants the emergence of more tournaments in the country, seeks better facilities for the players and suggested an entire overhaul of the system. To put weight on his statement, Nagal also stressed on the current state of Tennis in India, where according to him all singles' players look to move out of the country in search of better facilities.

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“First to have more tournaments in the country, bring coaches in, better facilities. Just a better system, I would say. Why are all tennis players - singles I'm talking about - going outside India & living outside India to give themselves a chance? We should ask why. Like I said, of course, we can sit here all day & talk about it. But in a simple word, I will just say it’s change the system. That’s it.”

Sumit Nagal is on a roll following the first-round victory. He would look to carry forward the momentum in the second round as well. He will take on the unseeded Chinese Shang Juncheng on Thursday, January 18, 2024.

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Published January 16th, 2024 at 19:45 IST

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