Tennis: The Essentials
Last Updated: Tuesday, September 14, 2010 | 12:59 PM ET
By Jesse Campigotto, CBC Sports
Tennis has developed a wide following in India, making it a terrific location for the sport to make its Commonwealth Games debut. Too bad so many of the world's best players don't feel the same way.
Don't expect to see a lot of star power on the hard courts of Delhi's refurbished R.K. Khanna Tennis Complex, which features a 5,000-seat show court.
Scotland's Andy Murray, the No. 4-ranked men's player in the world, is skipping the Delhi Games, along with No. 18 Marcos Baghdatis of Cyprus and No. 36 Lleyton Hewitt of Australia.
The cupboard is just as bare on the women's side, where world No. 7 Samantha Stosur of Australia, a French Open finalist this year, has decided to take a pass. That leaves Scotland's Elena Baltacha, who broke into the top 50 after the U.S. Open, as the top-ranked player in the Commonwealth Games draw.
Canada's Aleksandra Wozniak, who dropped to 65th after a first-round exit at the U.S. Open, won't be in Delhi. Tennis Canada decided not to send a team due to scheduling conflicts with pro tournaments.
The Commonwealth Games fall after the end of the gruelling Grand Slam season and clash with the lucrative China Open, which begins Oct. 4.
Mahesh Bhupathi and Leander Paes (India): One of the finest doubles players ever, Bhupathi owns four Grand Slam men's doubles titles and another seven in mixed doubles. In Delhi, he'll team with fellow veteran Paes. The partnership produced three Grand Slam men's doubles titles from 1999-2001.
Rohan Bopanna (India): The 30-year-old made a splash at the U.S. Open with an inspiring run to the men's doubles final with Pakistani partner Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi. The "Indo-Pak Express" was derailed by the American Bryan twins, but not before earning some well-deserved attention for their campaign promoting peace between their feuding countries. Bopanna will go it alone in the Commonwealth Games singles draw.
Sania Mirza (India): It's not often that the 144rd-ranked player in the world has a chance to be a star, but Mirza will get that opportunity when she plays on home court in Delhi. Even though the 23-year-old from Hyderabad, in southeast India, has never advanced past the fourth round of the Grand Slam singles tournament, she's got a chance in a depleted Commonwealth Games field.
Day 5 (Oct. 8)
- Mixed doubles
Day 6 (Oct. 9)
- Women's singles
- Men's doubles
Day 7 (Oct. 10)
- Men's singles
- Women's doubles