Aljaz Bedene – the Slovenian import poised to strengthen British tennis on the ATP tour


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Aljaz Bedene – the Slovenian import poised to strengthen British tennis on the ATP tour

Aljaz Bedene began 2015 on the ATP tour in impressive fashion. The 25-year-old Ljubljana born player produced a trio of shock wins against seeded Spanish players Feliciano Lopez, Guillermo Garcia-Lopez and Roberto Bautista Agut on his way to his first ever ATP level final at the Chennai Open in India.

He was, however unable to complete the dream run in the final when he lost to defending champion Stan Wawrinka.



The unexpected and impressive run during the Chennai Open has reminded the ATP Tour of how much potential and talent the former world number 71 has. While his run is a big encouragement for Bedene and his team, the British Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) will also be keeping a watchful eye on the Slovenians performance with the hope that he can continue this performance throughout 2015.

The reason as to why the LTA will be keeping a watchful eye is due to Bedene's desire to switch his citizenship to Britain.

A decision that has received a mixed response.

Bedene told the BBC that he wants to switch to Britain because "he has felt British for years". He has been based in the UK since 2008 and trains at the Gosling Tennis Academy in Hertfordshire. If he would to get British citizenship, Bedene would be ranked as the third highest British player after Andy Murray and James Ward.

A lot of people have perceived the move as a boost to British tennis, especially in regards to the Davis Cup team. On the other hand fellow British player Dan Evans voiced his objection to the move last year when he tweeted the following.

"So a guy is becoming British who has already played for his country.

Doesn't quite sound right to me!" The tweet has since been deleted from his account. Evans argued that once a player played Davis Cup for one country, they shouldn't play for another in his opinion.

Evans also stressed that he personally "has nothing against Bedene". Whilst playing for Slovenia, the Stevenage based player has only played a total of three matches between 2010-2012 with a 2-1 win-loss.

Two of the ties he participated in was against Norway and one against Italy.