CHENNAI: Ramkumar Ramanathan beat Tim Smyczek at Hall of Fame Open to become first Indian to reach ATP World Tour final in seven years. If he can win the final tomorrow he will become the first Indian to win an ATP Tour Finals in 20 years.
The last Indian man to win an ATP Tour title was Leander Paes in 1998 at the same event. Interestingly, this event has been a favourite of Indian tennis players with legend Vijay Amritraj winning the singles title thrice.
Here's a look at ten things we should know about the man who is poised to create history for Indian tennis:
1) Ramkumar Ramanathan was born in Chennai to Ramanathan and Alagammai, who are both into textile business
2) He was introduced to tennis by his father and started playing at the age of five.
3) Ramkumar trains at Sanchez-Casal Academy in Barcelona, Spain
4) In 2014, Ramkumar was in the news for qualifying in the Chennai Open for the first time. Since then, he has performed well at the professional level, having beaten French Open runner-up Dominic Thiem last year.
5) Ramkumar Ramanathan is studying a B.A. in Economics at Loyola College, Chennai. He can speak Tamil, English and Spanish.
6) He aspires to win a Grand Slam and represent India in Davis Cup.
7) His favourite tennis shots are serve and forehand.
8) His favourite playing surface is clay and hard court.
9) His idols growing up were Roger Federer and Juan Balcells.
10) He is a fan of La Liga football club F.C Barcelona. Also, he would have been a cricket player if not a tennis player.