Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis on Wednesdayannounced Tata as title sponsor of the 1st edition of Maharashtra Open here. The season opening ATP World Tour event in Maharashtra will be played at the Mhalunge Balewadi Stadium in Pune from January 1st to 6th 2018 and will be called as Tata Open Maharashtra 2018. The qualifiers will be played on December 30th & 31st, 2017 while the main draw starts from January 1st, 2018.
“I feel privileged to announce Tata as the title sponsor for Maharashtra Open. The Group has played a stellar role in upliftment of sports in the best of their capacities and their support to this ATP event organised in our state is a matter of great pride for us,” said the Chief Minister of Maharashtra.
“I would also like to extend my gratitude to Mr. Adar Poonawalla for coming on board as presenting sponsor and using sports as a platform to promote his Clean City Initiative, a very noble and one-of-its-kind cause for the city of Pune,” Fadnavis said.
The Honourable Chief Minister also unveiled the official Tata Open Maharashtra logo along with tournament officials including Praveen Singh Pardesi (IAS), Chairman, organizing committee, Banmali Agrawala, President, Infrastructure, Defense & Aerospace, Tata Sons, Pravin Darade, Secretary, organizing committee, Sanjay Khandare, Prashant Sutar, Tournament Director, Bharat Oza, MSLTA, President & Sunder Iyer, MSLTA, Hon. Sec.
Stating that Maharashtra is fast becoming a sporting destination of India, Fadnavis said the state had successfully hosted the Davis Cup (Pune), ATP Challenger (Pune) and WTA Mumbai Open (Mumbai) in the last few months. “Sports should be an integral part of every individual’s life, and events like these can serve as an inspiration for upcoming talents,” added Fadnavis.
Commenting on the partnership, Mr. N Chandrasekaran, Chairman, Tata Sons, said: “At Tata, we have always believed that developing an interest in sports is an important step in building a society that is focused on fitness and health. The Tata group has been committed to development of sports and sports persons across many disciplines for nearly a century. We are delighted to partner with the state and MSLTA for the Tata Open Maharashtra, which will showcase tennis to newer audiences and help increase the sport’s popularity among the youth.”
“We are grateful to Tata Group and all our sponsors who have backed this prestigious event. With the backing of these like-minded organisations, an event of this magnitude will surely be a standout and sought-after event for players and fans alike and put the state of Maharashtra on map of world tennis,” said Praveen Singh Pardesi (IAS), Chairman, organizing committee.
“The organizing committee extends its heartfelt gratitude towards Tata Group for believing in our vision to make Maharashtra a hotbed for tennis by organizing such world-class events. To complement their efforts, we are committed to making events like Tata Open Maharashtra accessible to all tennis fans around the country especially Maharashtra in best possible manner,” said Pravin Darade, Secretary, organizing committee.
“We are pleased to announce that the Tata Open Maharashtra carries a prize money of US$550,000. The winner will take home US$80,000,” said Sanjay Khandare, Treasurer, organizing committee.
Introduced in 1996, the tournament has seen the likes of Rafael Nadal, Stanislas Wawrinka, Carlos Moya, Patrick Rafter, Milos Raonic and Marin Cilic gracing the event. Making its debut in Pune, the tournament will be hosted by Maharashtra State Lawn Tennis Association (MSLTA) in association with Govt. of Maharashtra, Department of Sports and Youth Services, Govt. of Maharashtra and promoted by IMG-Reliance.
It’s a matter of great pride for us to have Tata and Adar Poonawalla Clean City Initiative as our partners for the inaugural edition of Tata Open Maharashtra. Successful delivery of this event needs partners who share the same passion and in Tata, Adar Poonawalla and other sponsors, we have found that. We hope to deliver a memorable debut tournament this year,” said Prashant Sutar, Tournament Director.
“The cooperation with a global player and respected brand of Tata Group’s stature is a great success reflecting the efforts of all the stakeholder’s over the years to bring the best of the world in India. Making its debut in Pune, the Tata Open Maharashtra will showcase some our best players and ensure we build on our existing fan base and create a new set of fans from the state of Maharashtra,” said Tom Annear, Co-Tournament Director.
Tennis fans can herald 2018 watching four top-50 players in world No. 6 Marin Cilic (Croatia), world No. 14 Kevin Anderson (South Africa), world No. 20 Roberto Bautista Agut (Spain) and world No. 42 Robin Haase (Netherlands) among a slew of other top international stars.