Ankita Raina
Ankita Raina

Mumbai: It would have been her third Wimbledon outing, but CoVID-19 smashed those hopes. However, the country’s top seed, Ankita Raina, has no regrets, but is hopeful that things will settle and it is a matter of time before she and her ilk will be back on their beloved courts.

"Sad about the development but in view of what is happening around us, we must accept it,” said Ankita while talking to The Free Press Journal from Pune on Thursday.

“There are no two ways when it comes to this pandemic and the International Tennis Federation (ITF) has taken the right call in stalling one of the oldest tennis tournaments on the planet,” said Ankita. “

Yes, it is definitely a loss, not only for the players but fans too,” said the player who has won the doubles in a WTA Challenger, along with 11 singles and 17 doubles titles on the ITF Women's Circuit.

Further, she reasoned, it could not be postponed as it is only during this period in England that the grass-court is conducive for play unlike the French Open, which has been postponed as it can be played any time during the year.

“It could be a blessing in disguise, as we get some prime time with family,” said the gold medal winner of the women's singles and mixed doubles events at the 2016 South Asian Games and the bronze medallist in singles at the 2018 Asian Games. Her message to fellow Indians is: “Please heed government advice, stay home.”

Former Davis Cup coach Nandan Bal also feels the same way. “Cancellation was the only option because apart from summer I don’t think grass is an option in any other season,” he said. "Apart from this, with the French and US Opens coming so close to each other (if they happen), it will be unfair and too demanding for the players,” added Bal.

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Free Press Journal