World No. 17 Marin Čilić will headline a strong singles field at the fifth edition of the Tata Open Maharashtra along with 16 other top-100 players, when south Asia’s only ATP 250 event returns to the opening week of the calendar and kicks off at the Balewadi Stadium in Pune on December 31, 2022.
The Tata Open Maharashtra, owned by IMG and managed by RISE, will be conducted by the Maharashtra State Lawn Tennis Association (MSLTA) for the fifth year in Pune. The last two editions of the tournament were held in the first week of February. However, now the players can gear up for the season’s first Grand Slam, Australian Open, by competing in Pune. The MSLTA will host the tournament, which is sponsored by Tata Group, in association with the Government of Maharashtra.
The 2014 US Open Champion Čilić has won this tournament twice, in 2009 and 2010, and also reached semi-finals in 2018. He will look to add another trophy to his cabinet. Apart from him, the singles main draw will feature five other top-50 players: the Netherlands’ Botic van de Zandschulp (ranked No. 35) , Finland’s Emil Ruusuvuori (No. 40), Argentina’s Sebastian Baez (No. 43), the USA’s Jenson Brooksby (No. 48) and Slovakia’s Alex Molcan (No. 50). The highly competitive field also consists of 11 other top-100 players, with the cut-off standing at rank number 115 for direct entry.
Van de Zandschulp competed in all four Majors in the 2022 season, losing the Wimbledon pre-quarterfinals and the Roland Garros Round of 32 to Rafael Nadal. He also ended as a runner-up at the Munich ATP 250, his best show of the season.
Prashant Sutar, Tournament Director of Tata Open Maharashtra, commented:
“Hosting Tata Open Maharashtra is a great pride not just for Maharashtra but also for the country. The upcoming edition will be a celebration of five glorious years of tennis in Pune. The tournament returning to January first week is really satisfying for us as organisers because there will be more exciting competition in the presence of bigger names and this singles acceptance list reflects the same. We are looking forward to welcoming all the players, officials and the fans to make this fifth edition even more special.“
Pravin Darade, Organising Secretary and also the Principal Secretary Environment, Government of Maharashtra, said:
“We are proud to say that we have left no stone unturned in making the tournament a success for all the stakeholders. It’s a competitive field this year with a lot of international talent coming into Pune. I am sure the players, their coaches and the officials will have a good time in Pune.“
Last edition’s runner-up Ruusuvuori made good progress through the year, taking three wins over top-20 players, while Baez featured in three ATP 250 events in the first half of the season, winning in Estoril and finishing runner-up in Bastad and Santiago. Brooksby also had reasonable success as he reached two finals (Dallas and Atlanta) and will now look to go the full distance in Pune.
Molcan, a southpaw, managed to reach finals in Lyon and Marrakesh, where he recorded a stunning win over top-10 player Felix Auger-Aliassime.
The qualifying event will begin on December 31, 2022, while the main draw will be played from January 2-7, 2023.
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