ITF's Davis Cup Committee upheld the Sri Lankan referee's decision at a meeting. -File photo by AFP
The International Tennis Federation (ITF) have rejected Pakistan's appeal against the awarding of their Davis Cup Asia-Oceania Group II tie to New Zealand, the governing body said on Wednesday.
Designated hosts Pakistan were disqualified from last month's Davis Cup tie, played in Myanmar because of security concerns, after referee Ashita Ajigala ruled that the grass court in Yangon had become unplayable and dangerous.
The Pakistan Tennis Federation (PTF) appealed against the ruling but the ITF's Davis Cup Committee upheld the Sri Lankan referee's decision at a meeting on Tuesday.
“It was the view of the Committee that the Pakistan Tennis Federation did not organise the tie to the required standards, notably with regard to the quality of the two available courts,” the ITF said in a statement.
The tie was played in Myanmar after New Zealand refused to visit Pakistan due to safety concerns.
“The Committee noted that the poor quality of the original match court led the Referee to designate the practice court as the match court,” the ITF statement read.
“Following the deterioration of the second court, specifically during the second match, the Referee determined that this court was now unplayable and a risk to player safety.
“The Referee also deemed that the court would not become playable in the next 24 hours due to its poor condition, and awarded the tie to New Zealand.”
Pakistan Tennis Federation (PTF) President Kaleem Imam said the fight would go on.
“The ITF have said that the referee's decision was right but we will take the appeal to another forum and will fight on against the injustice done to us,” Imam told AFP.
“If the referee had felt the courts were not up to the mark, why did he start the tie in the first place?”
The PTF could still appeal to the ITF Board of Directors, the statement added.