Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: Continuing its reputation of successfully hosting major national and International sporting events, the state is now geared up to organise the International Tennis Federation (ITF) US $ 15,000 tournament, likely to commence on February 26 next month at the Kalinga Stadium here. This is the first ever international tennis competition being planned to be hosted by Bhubaneswar.

A meeting in this regard took place in the presence of authorities of State Sports Department and Odisha Tennis Association today.

The seven-day US $ 15000 tournament, named ‘India Future', will end on March 4 and all the matches will be played at the Kalinga Stadium, official sources said.

Odisha Tennis Association Secretary, Madhu Padhi, said, "The upcoming ITF tournament will have all International Men players. Of the 32 main draw players, 50 percent are likely to be from outside the country."

As per sources, the qualifying matches will be held on February 23, 24 and 25 from which eight players would be selected for the main draw.

As many as 22 players would enter the main draw through direct entry, Padhi said, adding that two more players allotted by the All India Tennis Association (AITA) will get a wild card entry during the tournament.