: A whopping R 64 crore was spent on the country's most prestigious tennis facility before the Common Wealth Games - RK Khanna Stadium. At the time the tennis federation's secretary Anil Khanna had proudly proclaimed how the money had been utilised to create world-class infrastructure.
However, the first major tournament after last year's mega event, which concluded on Saturday, was enough to expose grave shortcomings.
Many out of the 16 participating teams in the Junior Davis Cup Asia/Oceania final qualifying tournament are not happy with the state-of-affairs.
"The rooms were extremely crammed and dirty with bunk beds. My first priority is the kids. We were very unhappy with the facilities so we shifted to a nearby hotel," New Zealand coach Ranjit Shinde told HT. The Kiwis moved out after the first day.
The Aussies, wiser from their CWG experience, never checked in. They preferred to stay at a nearby five-star.
Each team was given two rooms, one for the three players and one for the coach. The small rooms in the old block, with dirty bathrooms, were too much for the Kiwis to digest.
If the boarding experience was not unpleasant enough, the Malaysians has a forgetful culinary outing too. Malaysian coach, Abrahim Abubakar, said, "My boys found maggots in the rice. The condition of the rooms was deplorable. We complained and only after that the players were shifted to a room in the new block," said Abubakar.
HT found others too complaining about the food. "My kids fell sick after eating here. After that, we always went out to eat," said Japanese coach Ko Iwamto.
"We were unable to shift out of the complex because of budget constraints. The new block has good rooms but most are not in use. To host a major international event, one needs to be prepared. This was not good preparation," he added.
Tournament director, Manpreet Singh, agreed that only 11 out of the 31 rooms in the new block were operational. "Furnishings were not part of the Commonwealth Games. We are furnishing it on our own. That's why it has taken time. We'll have 14 rooms in operation by tomorrow." The point is that the federation has been unable to figure out furnishing for close to seven months since the CWG ended.
On complaints about bad food, she said, "I have not received any complaints."