The country’s best junior player, 15-year-old Manas Dhamne, will spearhead the Indian challenge in the International Tennis Club (IC) Rod Laver Junior Worldwide Finals in San Diego, California, USA, this week.
Rushil Khosla, Asmi Adkar and Sohini Mohanty are the other players in the Indian squad for the under-16 mixed team competition. Vikram Anand is the captain.
When India had qualified by winning the Asia-Oceania event in Japan in June, Rethin Pranav was part of the team. Since then, it was felt that India would need a stronger team to compete on the global stage. And thus, Manas was persuaded to make the team.
India was scheduled to play its first match against Britain. It will then play the other four teams South Africa, Italy, Argentina and USA, in a league format. The topper of the six-team league will be the champion.
The format features four singles, two doubles and an optional mixed doubles in case of a tie.
Manas, who had won the Asian junior title last year, has been training at the Piatti Centre in Italy thanks to the support of the IMG, following his fine performance in Eddie Herr and Orange Bowl junior events in the USA. He competes in the men’s ITF and Challenger events apart from the Grand Slams for juniors.