India's No.1 tennis star Somdev Devvarman will be turning out for the newly launched Punjab Marshalls, the Chandigarh franchise of the Champions Tennis League (CTL), that was launched here Thursday.
The logo of the team and future plans were unveiled by team owner Gurpreet Singh along with the legendary Vijay Amritraj, who is also the Chairman and managing director of Second Serve Pvt Ltd, the brain behind the league.
Punjab Marshalls would be the second franchise owned team from the city after Kings XI Punjab in the Indian Premier League (IPL).
The team's tag line 'Hai Dum' only looks to reinforce the message that the four-member team has been picked with an eye on creating a team that reflects the strength, skills and achievements of each player.
Besides Somdev, Punjab Marshalls also boast the tournament's highest ranked men's player David Ferrer of Spain, former great Greg Rusedski and the upcoming Garbine Muguruza in their ranks for the inaugural edition of the tournament, which will be played from Nov 17-26 across India. The Marshalls will launch their campaign against Delhi Nov 17.
The six teams have been divided into two groups, with each team in the group playing each other on home and away basis within their group. Punjab Marshalls will host their home matches Nov 20-21 at the Chandigarh Lawn Tennis Association Stadium. Mumbai is the third team in the group.
The teams which wins the highest number of games in each group during the group stage will face off in the finals scheduled for Nov 26 in New Delhi.
"My wife and I have always been passionate sports fans and wanted to do something for the development of sport in the region and India as a whole. The CTL provides a fantastic opportunity to contribute to the sport as well as a fantastic way of getting way into a sport that we like and hence it was a win-win situation for us," said the 49 year-old, whose astute business mind has seen him build a successful company in Gurang Estates Pvt Ltd. with business interest spread across India," said Gurpreet in a statement.
Amritraj, while speaking at the launch of the Punjab Marshalls, praised the efforts and vision of Punjab team and termed them as a strong competitor in the League.
"The league will have some of the world's best tennis stars in action. Tennis fans and in Chandigarh would get to watch them play and I am sure many more youngstars will be inspired to take up the sport by just watching them in action," he added.