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Elite players to get payment before CWG

Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: The Chairman of the Commonwealth Games preparatory committee for tennis, former Davis Cup captain Jaideep Mukherjea, and the secretary general of the All India Tennis Association (AITA), Anil Khanna, had a “fruitful'' meeting with the Union Sports Ministry on Monday, and submitted comprehensive data to facilitate the release of funds for the elite players.

As per the agreement, the government would pay the five elite players, Leander Paes, Mahesh Bhupathi, Rohan Bopanna, Somdev Devvarman and Sania Mirza, daily allowances to the tune of $115 per day for 75 days and economy air tickets for 11 tournaments in a year, for the last two years.

Long dispute

Though there was a long standing dispute between the association, the players and the Union government, with regard to the submission of bills, the problem was resolved with “minimal documentation''.

The AITA along with Mukherjea had prepared a complete list of all the tournaments that the players had participated, along with the draw sheets and all other relevant details, as part of the documentation.

Though the deal was originally meant specifically for the five elite players, two more players, including the Youth Olympics finalist Yuki Bhambri, were also drafted into the scheme as deserving beneficiaries.

In a joint statement released on Monday, Jaideep Mukherjea and Anil Khanna, hoped that the Sports Ministry would make the payment over the next two to three weeks, after seeking further clarifications, if required, from the players concerned.

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