Less funding for women by the Karnataka Lawn Tennis Association is preventing them from pursuing their careers.
Bengaluru, Sept 20: No international tournaments were held for women yet three were conducted for men in 2022 itself.
Anushka Jain, a tennis player said, “Basically you have to fund yourself which got really expensive. And I have not received any financial support.” She further added that financial support plays a huge in helping women to pursue their careers. And it becomes a different ball game altogether when women players approach to get sponsors versus male players approaching for sponsors.
Karnataka State Lawn Tennis Association (KSLTA) does not fund women’s tournaments. Less number of tournaments has led to many female players not pursuing their careers.
Tanisha Rohira, a retired tennis player said, “A basic tennis tournament starts from $15,000 and goes up to $100,000. In order to get funds the association needs to first approach sponsors. They are not providing funds as Indian tennis does not have viewers.”
Niranjan Ramesh, chief coach at KSLTA said, “It is an expensive sport so you need financial support from the Government. Without the support of government and private sector nothing can be done.”
Some of the best academies in India charge a lot to train players, starting at Rs 80,000 per month. Experts say, such a high fee makes it difficult for the players from middle class to access these academies.
Ms. Rohira said, “Also, our association in general does not give us the financial backing that women players would need. The problem needs to be tackled from grass root level, that’s by funding female players’ basic training until they reach a certain level and then find them financial backing. They should also be provided more access to courts at KSLTA.”