By Nalme Nachiyar and Arun Sam
Bringing an end to much eagerness and anticipation among the sports community of the University of Hyderabad (UoH), a newly built two tennis court, complex of international standards was inaugurated by Prof. Ramakrishna Ramaswamy, Vice-Chancellor, here, on Thursday.
“Tennis is a growing sport in India. We want to see a lot of participation and utilization of these courts among the university community. We also want to cultivate a sports culture within the campus level,” said the VC throwing open Hyderabad’s first eight layered synthetic acrylic court, made on the basis of the US open model, to the tennis enthusiasts of UoH.
With an expenditure of 23 lakh on the courts and an additional expense of 7 lakh on the 12-feet tall fences along the perimeter, Dr. K. V. Rajasekhar, Assistant Director, Physical Education, UoH said that the courts would last for 15 to 20 years. The major upside with the 120 feet by 120 feet dimension court complex is that, it is maintenance free.
Previously, the coaching cum maintenance was given on a contract basis to KK Tennis Academy, Secunderabad by the department. Now, however, the department has proposed the idea of a University Tennis Club. “We are planning to form a University Tennis Club, which, once approved by the Vice-Chancellor, will take the tennis court under its wings. A membership fee will be collected from the university community, both staff and students, for appointing a coach and maintenance of the court,” informed Dr. Rajasekhar.
“I have been eagerly monitoring the progress and waiting to play on those courts. The previous clay courts had a lot of gravel and tiny stones would just start popping up making the court uneven. The ball wouldn’t bounce well too,” Sunil Rajapitamahuni, II year PhD student at the Department of Chemistry said.
Sreenivas Vadicherla, IV year IMSc student at the Dept. of Mathematics and Statistics, is glad that the players can now come in during any season. “We don’t have to worry about rains and the playing experience will be uniform all over the year,” he observed.
Fielding a question about the absence of sports quota in the campus, the VC said, “It is very difficult to implement it (sports quota) at the post graduate level. However, we are looking at implementing two percent of sports quota within the integrated course system.”
Samson, the Physical Education Trainer at the Kendriya Vidyalaya, UoH Campus felt that, “By emulating the education model of foreign schools, if we take care of physical health and fitness of the young students then that would eventually enable them to achieve academic growth. If the health culture is inculcated in childhood, then it would remain with them throughout their life”, he pointed out.
While for now, plans are afoot to build a gallery and install floodlights for the tennis courts, the University is also focused on developing a sports corner at the south campus, which will include a fitness centre, a beach volley ball court, a synthetic basketball court and an aerobic studio, Dr. Rajasekhar informed.