Rajeev Ram born in Denver, Colorado and resides in Carmel, Indiana has been playing on the pro circuit since 2004. He played tennis as a youth for Carmel High School in Indiana, where he became state singles Champion. Now after 6 years of playing on the pro circuit Rajeev Ram has decided that it’s time for Indiana to reap some of the benefits of him going pro. Rajeev has done a lot for Indiana in the past and with the loss of the Indianapolis Tennis Championship, Rajeev has brought professional tennis back to the Indiana communities as he will play Taylor Dent in a one singles set, 4 doubles sets with Taylor and Rajeev and various other events.
Proceeds for the event will benefit HCCTA’s (Hamilton County Community Tennis Association) Communty Reads program, which provides books about athletes who have overcome obstacles to schools and libraries in Hamilton and Marion counties. The program started in 2005 and has donated more than 500 books to schools and libraries and its goal is to donate 3,000 by 2015. The program also allows high school students to rewrite some of the books to make them appropriate for elementary-aged readers.
The event has created two teams; one team named “TEAM WITSKEN” for its Captain Rick Witsken, will consist in Honorary Captain James Garner from the Indiana Public Schools, Rajeev Ram - Tennis Pro, Sameer Kumar – Amateur Junior, John Moorin – Amateur Adult, Kevin Gill – Teaching Pro (Indianapolis Racquet Club), and Bryan Smith – Teaching Pro (U Indy). The second team named “TEAM BROWN” for its Captain Dianne Brown, will consist of Honorary Captain Kathy Kinghorn from the Indiana Public Schools, Taylor Dent – Tennis Pro, Brooke Austin – Amateur Junior, Colin Atkinson – Amateur Adult, Spencer Fields – Teaching Pro (5 Seasons), and Mark Woldmoe – Teaching Pro (CRC).
During the event there will be an auction of an autographed racquet from Pete Sampras, an autographed racquet of Roger Federer, an autographed Wimbledon Towel from John Isner and many more items.
Tickets for the event will be $20 for Adults and $10 for 18 & under, seats are limited and can only be purchased online at www.HCTA.org. The event will go from 7pm to 10:30pm Saturday, December 4th at the Carmel Racquet Club.
In a recent interview with Rajeev Ram about the event:
TennisWorldUSA: What gave you the idea to do this event?
Rajeev Ram: driving force was to keep pro tennis in Indy after we lost the ATP event...then also uses it as a way to give back to the community.
TennisWorldUSA: How did you pick the players involved with the event?
Rajeev Ram: Taylor is a good friend and a great American player so having him around will be fantastic...the others are local people that i have relationships with that represent different clubs or are top juniors in the area.
TennisWorldUSA: As tennis is always developing in local communities, do you see your event being a driving force to bring more youth to the tennis industry? Your event is a great support for education, but will it help develop tennis also in the communities?
Rajeev Ram: I sure hope so...I hope it shows people that tennis can be enjoyed at any level and that it can be a platform for other great things.
TennisWorldUSA: Are you getting any support from the USTA and the Midwest Section in your event?
Rajeev Ram: They have always been supportive of the HCCTA and that they have helped us a little bit with the marketing of the event... unfortunately, the event is taking place on the same weekend as their annual meeting due to player schedules so we weren't able to team up as much as we would like. We hope to partner with them next year
TennisWorldUSA: Was there a particular reason why you picked the Carmel Racquet Club for the event? And with your fans in tennis do you think limiting the space for seating will be beneficial to the event raising funds?
Rajeev Ram: We want a good atmosphere so a sellout is the goal...Carmel Racquet club is where i played first in Indy and they were nice enough to donate the court time...we plan to move it around yearly though
TennisWorldUSA: Last question...Will this be the only charitable event that you will be doing for the Indiana area youth? And if not what other plans do you have, with the busy season that you always have each year?
Rajeev Ram: Right now this is all that i am organizing...one event takes quite a bit of work...I'm always open to helping out with others' events but i am going to try my best to make the EntouRAJ for kids a great time so the event continues year after year