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Kingfisher Airlines Tennis Open '06
Author: Hiral Valia
India’s biggest international Tennis experience, The Kingfisher Airlines Tennis Open 2006, drew to a close after a nail-biting finish and some magnificent tennis action over the weekend at Mumbai’s CCI. Dmitry Tursunov walked away with the Single’s title while Mahesh Bhupathi and Mario Ancic took the Doubles honours.

This annual event is witnessed several top-notch ATP players from across the globe. Obviously, the event also attracted substantial media and fans’ interests and became the toast of the Nation.The host of International Players included the likes of Former World No. 1 and French Open champion Carlos Moya, India’s Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupathi ,Tommy Robredo from Spain, Mario Ancic of Croatia, Radek Stepanek and Tomas Berdych from the Czech Republic, Chilean Fernando Gonzalez, and Germany’s Nicolas Kiefer.

The rescheduled finals were held under unbelievable circumstances, with the sporting spirit prevailing over every possible hurdle. The action on the courts was exceptionally captivating. Rohan and Mustafa proved to be a powerful combination in this tournament and ran really close. Tursunov proved that his serve and forehand are as sharp as his tongue. He claimed his maiden ATP title and broke into the top-20 for the first time after beating Tomas Berdych 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 (5) in final on Monday. Watching him play, with all the obvious talent and antics, remains an experience for the city.

Commenting on the just concluded Kingfisher Airlines Tennis Open, Dr. Vijay Mallya, Chairman and CEO, Kingfisher Airlines Limited said, “The last seven days at the Kingfisher Airlines Tennis Open provided some outstanding tennis action for spectators and lovers of the sport. I wish all the participants and winners, the very best for the ensuing tennis season and hope that they have a successful and professionally rewarding season in the coming months”.

“Kingfisher Airlines will continue to support this event and tennis lovers in India can be assured of some splendid tennis action over the coming years as well”, added Dr. Mallya.

The excitement around the Kingfisher Airlines Tennis Open 2006, which kicked-off on September 25, 2006, was not restricted to CCI’s Centre Court alone. A series of promotional events were organized on the sidelines of the week-long tournament. A celebrity match– featuring Bollywood celebrities Soha Ali Khan, Kunal Kapoor and Diana Hayden provided an appropriate curtain raiser to the week-long tournament. A ‘Kids Clinic’ was held for school children in Delhi as well as Mumbai where tennis star Mario Ancic delighted the school kids with some tennis lessons. A spectacular Street Match with Mahesh Bhupathi and Juan Martin Del Potro was also held and enthusiasts at Mumbai’s Phoenix Mills actually got to play a few points with the two tennis legends. A fashion show featuring the latest ensemble of two of India’s hottest designers, Ashish Soni and Surily Goel, was the highlight of the weekend, just before the action began for the finals. The show-stopper of the fashion show was the four tennis pros Dmitry Tursunov, Thomas Berdych, Aisam Qureshi and Rohan Bopanna who walked the ramp. In addition to this, a series of promotions were held where guests flying Kingfisher Airlines could enter a contest and meet some of the world’s greatest tennis stars in person.

The Kingfisher Airlines Tennis Open closed as grandly as it kicked off, with everyone from the top executives of the company, Govt Officials and celebrities pouring in for some world class Tennis Action.

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