The 22nd edition of the Chennai Open tennis tournament is all set to kickoff today and lining up a spectacular show are some Indian tennis stars as well as their global counterparts. The tournament was earlier held in Delhi in 1996 as the McDowell Open and it was later shifted to Chennai at the SDAT Tennis Stadium in 1997 and is now known as the Chennai Open.
All eyes will be on Saketh Myneni and Ramkumar Ramanathan who will spearhead India’s challenge against a strong foreign field headed by World No 6 Marin Cilic. Other names in the tournament who are expected to be strong challengers include last year’s runner-up Borna Coric of Croatia, Spaniards Roberta Bautista Agut and Albert Ramos-Vinolas.
With defending champion Stan Wawrinka, who is a Swiss professional tennis sensation, opting to skip the tournament this year, Cilic is touted to be the top contender for the title. Cilic has won the title in 2009 and 2010. The Croat had enjoyed an excellent run of form during the last season and has recently claimed his maiden Masters title in Cincinnati, defeating Andy Murray in the final. At the 2016 Paris Masters, Cilic also defeated Novak Djokovic for the first time in his career to reach the semi-finals, but then lost to John Isner.
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Bautista Agut’s performance was also lauded during the last season having won two ATP titles as well as grabbed a win against Djokovic. Apart from Myneni and India’s Ramanathan, Yuki Bhambri is also among the list of Indians in the fray in singles.