The All India Tennis Association on Thursday named Zeeshan Ali as the coach of the Davis Cup team that will face New Zealand in Pune while captain Anand Amritraj, who had sought another term with the team, has also been retained for the tie.
It will be Anand Amritraj’s last stint with the team however, as Mahesh Bhupathi will take over the role after the New Zealand tie scheduled in February 2017. Amritraj had joined the Indian Davis Cup team back in 2013 along with coach Zeeshan Ali.
Rohan Bopanna, however, failed to earn a place in the probable squad for the tie that has Leander Paes, Saketh Myneni, Ramkumar Ramanathan, Yuki Bhambri and Prajnesh Gunneswaran. tTe final four will be picked two weeks before the New Zealand match.
To give exposure to young talents, Adil Kalyanpur and Nitin Kumar Sinha have been included to practice with the squad
It was reported that the national tennis federation wanted to replace Amritraj before the Davis Cup Group 1 Asia/Oceania first round tie from February 3-5, citing he failed to impose the discipline required in the side.
“Amritraj has done a good job and there were no disciplinary issues in the camp. We have retained him till the New Zealand tie and want to give Mahesh a chance,” said AITA secretary Hironmoy Chatterjee at a press conference here on Thursday.
The AITA selection committee also named the squad for the Federation Cup Asia/Oceania Group I event that will take place in Astana, Kazakhstan from February 6, 2017.
The final team will be selected two weeks before the tie from: Sania Mirza, Ankita Raina, Snehadevi Reddy, Karman Thandi, Riya Bhatia and Prarthana Thombare. Nandal Bal will be the coach-cum-captain.