Junior Tennis League: Pune’s champions get ready to rumble in Season 3
The third edition of the prestigious Pune metropolitan district tennis association (PMDTA) - BVG junior tennis league 2018 is set to begin on June 29. A one-of-its-kind league, the junior tennis league will host players participating in four different categories, viz the under-10, under-12, under-14 and under-16.pune Updated: Jun 28, 2018 16:41 IST
India plays host to a large number of hyped league format sports and enthusiasts from across have always explicitly shown their support for their favourite, making sports more of a lifestyle. After the Indian Premier League (cricket), Indian Super League (football) and the more recently held Ultimate Table Tennis League (UTT), Pune is now gearing up to host the Junior Tennis League (JTL).
The third edition of the prestigious Pune metropolitan district tennis association (PMDTA) - BVG junior tennis league 2018 is set to begin on June 29. A one-of-its-kind league, the junior tennis league will host players participating in four different categories, viz the under-10, under-12, under-14 and under-16.
Growling Tigers, Raging Bulls, Rising Eagles, Roaring Lions, Speeding Cheetahs and Striking Jaguar are the six teams that will be participating in the tournament. The owners of each teams were present as all registered players were put under the hammer and were auctioned by respective sides that wanted to secure their services.
All the teams were permitted only three under-16 players per team, while they could invest unobstructed in the other three categories, provided the minimum number of players were signed.
Unlike other competitions where boys and girls do not square off in singles matches, the JTL has opted to introduce the concept. The organisers believe that this would bring about unpredictability and will also draw more people towards the tournament due to its unique nature.
Being an individual event, it will not only inculcate team spirit among the youngsters, but will also give budding professionals an idea about how international competitions, such as the Davis Cup and Hopman Cup, actually work, say the owners.
The matches will be held only on the weekends and will go on till August 15. Every player will face each other at least once in the league stage, before the top two qualify for the final. The winner of the Pune edition will then square off against the winner of the Mumbai edition to claim bragging rights within the state of Maharashtra.
Aditya Madkekar, owner and coach, Growling Tigers:
“We have participated in the junior tennis league under the name of Millennium AKTA Growling Tigers before, but that was in Mumbai. This is the first time we will be participating in Pune. Here, at the club, we’re all tennis enthusiasts. I believe the league is a good initiative as it inculcates a team spirit within the players and gives them an exciting competition to participate in. They will also learn how to combat pressure at a young age, which will be beneficial for them. This is something that Maharashtra has started and I believe other states will soon follow suit. The matches are well-spaced out as well.
“We’ve opted to go for a balanced team rather than wasting too many points on one player. Our top one player cost us only 2,300, which is good. We might not have any superstars, but we have a great mix of younger and relatively more experienced players in our team. I believe we have a decent chance to win the tournament.”
Neel Joglekar, player, Growling Tigers
“I’m looking forward to the tournament. We have a great set of players and a good coach as well, so I’m hoping for the best. Tournaments like this gives us the opportunity to play against top-level players, which is very important at our age.”
First Published: Jun 28, 2018 16:33 IST