Indian ATP event to go ahead -
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Indian ATP event to go ahead

Indian ATP event to go ahead

From correspondents in Madras

December 29, 2004

THE season-opening ATP Indian Open will go ahead as scheduled next week in the southern city of Madras despite the heavy death toll caused by tsunami tidal waves in the area, organisers said today.

"The tournament is definitely on and no player has pulled out," said Ravi Krishnan of the International Management Group (IMG), which has organised the event for the past eight years.

Madras is the capital city of Tamil Nadu state where some 4500 people died in Sunday's giant waves triggered by an earthquake off the Indonesian coast.

World No.5 Carlos Moya of Spain and Asia's flag-bearer Paradorn Srichaphan of Thailand top the list of players taking part in the $US400,000 ($514,000) event from January 3-9.

Moya, who defeated Paradorn in the final last season, returns to defend his crown after leading Spain to victory in the Davis Cup final against the United States earlier this month.

Among other top-100 players in the fray are Rainer Schuettler of Germany, Jonas Bjorkman of Sweden, Alex Calatrava of Spain, Lu Yen-Hsun of Taiwan, Dennis van Scheppingen of the Netherlands and Jan-Michael Gambill of the United States.

The organisers will host a charity auction on Sunday to raise funds for the tsunami victims.

Among the items to be auctioned are caps, racquets and shirts signed by leading players like Maria Sharapova, Venus Williams, Bjorn Borg and Chris Evert.

Clothing and caps autographed by golf stars Vijay Singh and Annika Sorenstam will also be auctioned.

Agence France-Presse

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