The inaugural Tata Open Maharashtra tennis tournament begins in Pune today. The ATP 250 event will have five top-50 players. Tournament-favourite Marin Cilic and defending champion Roberto Bautista Agut got first round byes. Another hot contender will be US Open finalist and second seed Kevin Anderson, the world number 14 from South Africa.
Indian youngsters, led by Yuki Bhambri, will look to exploit the familiar home conditions and start the new season on a high. Bhambri opens his 2018 campaign against local boy Arjun Kadhe, who has returned to professional circuit only last year.
Ramkumar Ramanathan, who shocked World No. 8 Dominic Thiem at Antalya Open, has been drawn against Spain’s Carballes Baena, the World No. 108, in his opening round.
Sumit Nagal will also compete in the singles main draw after coming through qualifying stage. Nagal will make his debut on the ATP World Tour at this event, which moved out of Chennai due to financial issues.
The doubles draw will have four Indian pairs competing. Legendary Leander Paes and his partner Purav Raja have been pitted against defending champions Rohan Bopanna and Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan.