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- Tuesday, April 30, 2013 - From Print Edition


KARACHI: The board of Asian Tennis Federation (ATF) has written a letter to Davis Cup Committee, supporting Pakistan against the controversial decision of the referee who awarded their Davis Cup tie to New Zealand earlier this month in Myanmar.


President ATF Anil Khanna in a letter to Davis Cup Committee on April 29 stated that ATF had held its Board Meeting at Bangkok on April 28 in which ATF Vice President (South Asia) and patron Pakistan Tennis Federation (PTF) Senator Dilawar Abbas drew attention of the Board to PTF’s appeal to the ITF against the decision taken by the referee.


Senator Abbas presented the facts to ATF Board and highlighted that the tie had commenced on a court selected by the referee from amongst the two courts which were meant for match play and practice. In fact the referee had selected the practice court for the match. As per referee’s instructions the court was shaved and maintained. Pakistan had won the first match and had been leading in the second one, the letter stated.


Anil further stated that the referee perhaps noticed some aberration at this stage and within a very short time awarded the match and the tie to New Zealand without a reasonable discussion and opportunity given to make good the aberration which he had noticed as per Davis Cup regulations.


“We fully respect the Davis Cup Committee and the fair regulations made by the ITF for conduct of Davis Cup. Having read the rules carefully, we feel that the decision taken by the referee was without due deliberation and consideration, conformity with Davis Cup Regulations and in good spirit of our premier tennis event,” stated the President ATF.


He mentioned that Pakistan had been suffering for the last few years because of not being able to host Davis Cup ties, which had also resulted in financial loss to PTF as playing Davis Cup at home is the only opportunity for some nations to raise money.


“. . . The ATF Board supports the case of Pakistan and would request the Davis Cup Committee to kindly overrule the decision of the referee and allow Pakistan to host New Zealand in a venue of Pakistan’s choice with prior consent of ITF. This will be a fair decision and will satisfy both the nations and boost the morale of Pakistan players who have participated in and supported the Davis Cup movement, selflessly, over the years,” stated the President ATF.