Saket Myneni, a player who can play both singles and doubles has returned to the Indian Davis Cup team that travels to Pakistan for the Group I tie, as the AITA selection committee picked the squad on expected lines. With both singles and doubles players set for automatic selection, Saket comes into team as a perfect player in case things do not go according to plan.
Prajnesh Gunneswaran and Ramkumar Ramanathan will lead the singles challenge while Rohan Bopanna and Divij Sharan will make the doubles pair for the grass court tie, scheduled to be held in Islamabad on 14-15 September. Since Sumit Nagal has made himself unavailable due to an injury, the five-member committee, led by Rohit Rajpal, picked Myneni, the next best player on ranking charts.
Rising Indian star Sasi Kumar Mukund was selected as a reserve member. With Rajpal and Balram Singh were physically present for the meeting, Zeeshan Ali and Nandan Bal attended it via tele conference. Myneni did not feature in India's last tie, when the country hosted Italy on grass courts of Calcutta South Club last year in September, losing 1-3.
He last featured for the country when India travelled to Serbia for the World Group Play-offs, losing in straight sets with Bopanna to Nikola Milojevic and Danilo Petrovic. Myneni recently lifted the doubles title at the Chengdu Challenger last week with compatriot Arjun Kadhe but has not got the best of singles results this season with just one semifinal appearance in 14 tournaments on the Challenger Tour.
The winner of the tie will qualify for the next year's World Group Qualifiers with India not losing to Pakistan in any of their 6 encounters in the past.