The hard working Suraj Prabodh from Mysore has been handed a wild card entry in the US $ 100,000 Bengaluru Open 2017, a premier event on the ATP Challenger Tour which gets underway with the qualifying round on Saturday, November 18.
Also saving the trouble of going through the qualifiers are India's leading player Saketh Myneni, who is on a comeback trail after an injury lay-off, and Sumit Nagal. The fourth and last wild card along with the two special category slots will be announced tomorrow.
Suraj, who grew up playing practicing wall tennis in Mysore, has taken huge strides and was one of the top juniors players in India. He also played the Australian Open Juniors and recently he finished as the runner-up in the National Championships. With a current singles ranking of 1219, he would be looking to grab the opportunity and improve his rankings.
"I am glad that I have got a wild card. I shall try to justify the gesture," said the 22-year-old.
Meanwhile, Sumit, a winner in the Junior Wimbledon Doubles in 2015 has been consistent with his performances in the ITF and Challenger circuit. He is also the winner of the indoor Asian Games gold medal.
Bengaluru will be the final stop of the 5-legged ATP sojourn in Asia with Vietnam hosting two of them, China and Pune (currently underway) hosting one each.
Since the Bengaluru Open carries points that are allotted for a US $ 125,000 prize money event as apart from the prize money, the hospitality is also being taken care of by the organisers, it comes as a boon to those players who are in the cusp of breaking into the top-100 to garner maximum points before they embark on the next season.
As many as 22 players earned a direct entry with four wild cards, four qualifiers and two special category slots making up the draw of 32. Three other Indians - Yuki Bhambri, Prajnesh Gunneswaran, and Ramkumar Ramanathan Indians have already booked a slot in the main draw.