Kolkata: Come November and the city may get to witness Indian tennis stars Sania Mirza and Leander Paes together for an exhibition match in South Club.
The city`s pride, South Club, is set to be opened in a new avatar with five newly-laid synthetic courts and president Jaidip Mukerjea today announced that they have plans to bring the two top tennis stars for an exhibition match.
There is a section of people who strongly oppose the idea of converting the famous centre court, which has witnessed several legends in the club`s 92-year-old history.
But it`s a thing of future, asserted Mukerjea.
"The young generation wants it. Moreover, we will have all the three surfaces with this. It`s for the betterment of the club," he added.
The South Club has hired the same Australian-firm, Rebound Ace, which was criticised during the Commonwealth Games.
Several leading players, including Roger Federer and Lleyton Hewitt, in the past, has criticised the surface.
But Mukerjea promised that it would be different.
"It will be a nine-layered surface, which will help the young players."
Tennis great Naresh Kumar said the authorities should rethink if all the top players don`t like the surface.
Giving example of the US Open surface, Kumar told PTI: "They have one acrylic courts. It`s the type of surface which was a rejected at one point of time. I don`t know what it is now. But they should rethink if all the top players feel so."
However, he welcomed the idea of laying the synthetic court, even as the centre court has had some epic fights in the past.
"If you have grass courts, you play for 6-7 months. Rest five months you can`t play. It`s better to have one of these surfaces.
"It has to happen. Grass court is a luxury. It`s hanging with the overwhelming power of Wimbledon. But the synthetic surface has to come. It`s the demand for more hours for youngsters. Even I felt so bad but it`s impractical thinking," Naresh Kumar added.
First Published: Tuesday, September 11, 2012, 21:47