Asian Nations Versus Australia: Grand Asian Slam

Friday, January 04, 2008

Is it a bluff to get more proceed money from the Australian Open - or rather about getting equal treatment and better Asian representation?

Asian federation president Anil Khanna said this week from Doha that "Australia had not really understood the feeling of the Asian nations". He accused the Australian Open of failing to fulfil its part of the current memorandum, which is due to expire at the end of 2008.

"We see Asia almost as equal partners in terms of the continent as Australia and we feel all the continents should work together and can co-operate very well together and we can help each other in building up tennis, but obviously we need to have equal terms," Khanna said, adding that if no agreement could be reached, "then maybe Asia should aspire to have its own grand slam at some time.

"I would not put a time-frame to it, but I think the aspiration of the people is there, the money power is there, the desire to do so is there in a number of countries in Asia, not one. The players will definitely want that to happen sometime because the players definitely would want a large amount of money coming into tennis. I think a grand slam in Asia will be extremely welcome."

Asked if he was advocating a fifth slam, Khanna said: "Well, I would love to see if we could have a fifth slam. Maybe it's a dream, maybe it will come some time if the players want it. It could be rotated between nations. It could be an Asian slam."
An Asian Slam? Hell yeah.