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Rediff.com  » Sports » Australia want Davis Cup tie moved from India

Australia want Davis Cup tie moved from India

March 26, 2009 16:49 IST

Australia's tennis federation have requested their Davis Cup tie against India be moved out of the country due to security concerns.

The Indian hosts, however, remain confident of staging the May event.

"Australia have told the ITF [International Tennis Federation] that the tie should not be held in India," All India Tennis Association [AITA] executive director Ranbir Chauhan said on Thursday.

"We have also written back to the ITF," he added.

"We're very, very confident the tie is going to take place in India. We guarantee full security, they will be treated as our guests."

Tennis Australia confirmed approaching the governing body.

"We have sought and received advice from a variety of sources regarding travelling to India," Tennis Australia CEO Steve Wood said.

"It is on the basis of security concerns that we have asked for the tie to be moved out of India. The ITF has received our request and is doing its own security assessment.

"The safety of our players and staff is of paramount importance to Tennis Australia."

'VERY UPSET'

The May 8-10 zonal tie is due to be staged in Chennai, considered a safe city, due to increased safety fears elsewhere following the ambush of the Sri Lankan cricket team bus in Lahore by armed gunmen this month. The attack has triggered concern, especially in south Asia, that sport could become a target for more attacks. India also remains nervous after terrorists killed around 166 people in a strike on Mumbai in November.

The AITA had announced it would hire private security consultants for the tie against the former Davis Cup champions.

Chauhan criticised Australia's move to have the tie shifted.

"Even after 26/11 [the day the Mumbai attacks began] the ATP event was held," he said. "We took permission from the state government and only then did we choose Chennai."

"We are very upset, there is no reason for this."

The AITA would hold a news conference on Friday to explain the issue, he added.

Source:
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