Singles players Sumit Nagal and Ramkumar Ramanathan are set to be named in the Indian Davis Cup squad for the tie against Pakistan after confirming their availability for the matches on November 29 and 30 at a neutral venue.
With both Nagal and Ramkumar now available, India will have its best singles players taking on Pakistan. Prajnesh Gunneswaran, India’s top-ranked player, is unavailable since he is getting married on the first day of the tie. For the doubles rubber, veteran Leander Paes will make one half.
AITA took the decision after the seasoned campaigner made himself available without any condition when others refused to travel to Pakistan. It will be Paes’ first involvement since winning the record-shattering doubles duel with Rohan Bopanna during the China tie (2018).
Bopanna publicly lashed out at the national federation for removing non-playing captain Mahesh Bhupathi and it will be interesting to see if he will be approached and asked for his availability. Skipper Rohit said he is keen to field the best possible team and it has been learnt that he is in favour of having Bopanna in the side.
“Rohit is keen to have Bopanna, but he’s to agree to play with Paes,” said a source. “Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan and Saketh Myneni are other options to play doubles with Paes,” added the source. Both Nedunchezhiyan and Myneni made themselves available for the trip to Islamabad before the ITF moved the tie out of Pakistan.