Taking strong exception to the comments made by its own vice president, the All India Tennis Association said it was "unethical" to label the team selected for Davis Cup tie against Korea as "third rate" and that the young players were being misled.
AITA Vice President Karti P Chidambaram, who is considered to be anti-AITA top brass, had written to Sports Ministry about the selection and had described the chosen team as third-string.
Chidambaram, lending support to 11 revolting players, sought government intervention in resolving the ongoing crisis as he questioned the logic behind selecting a weak team.
"It is unethical and inappropriate for any official of AITA or any player to call the Davis Cup Team against Korea a 3rd rate team or 3rd class team," AITA Secretary General Bharat Oza said through a press statement.
"The team consists of Leander Paes, world No. 3 doubles player. Purav Raja is amongst the best doubles players of India and is in no way less than Divij Sharan who played for India in the previous Davis Cup tie. V.M. Ranjeet and Vijayant Malik are equally good singles players. Arjun Kadhe and Ashwin Vijaraghavan are competent reserves. Arjun is two times National Junior Champion, quarter-finalist in doubles in French Open and also runner-up in 2012 Men’s Nationals in Delhi," the statement added.
Karti Chidambaram is also vice president of Tamil Nadu Tennis Association (TNTA), which does not endorse the working style of the national federation.
TNTA had also shot a letter to AITA, seeking several explanations on the recent controversy. TNTA had asked why Ramkumar Ramnathan (789) was not selected as reserve since he is higher-ranked than Arjun Kadhe (1107), who was selected. PTI AT MRM MRM 01181820 NNNN