Former Davis Cup Player Akhtar Ali dies at age 81

Last Updated: Sunday, 7 February 2021 (14:53 IST)
Kolkata: Former player Akhtar Ali, who represented India between 1958-1964 in the international circuits, died at his central residence early on Sunday.

Ali, who is survived by his wife, former Indian star Zeesan Ali and two daughters, he was 81. He died in his sleep at around 0230 hours, daughter Nilofer told UNI.
 
She said her father was discharged from Woodlands Hospital in the city on Sunday after undergoing treatment for urinary infection for a week.
 
“He returned home happily and exchanged greetings with family members and neighbours and was on jovial mood,” the eldest daughter said
 
Arjuna Award winner for Lawn Tennis Akhtar Ali, born 5 July 1939, was one of the highly disciplined persons India ever produced. She said his brother Zeeshan is rushing back from a coaching camp in New Delhi for the last rites, which to be held at Soloana cemetery in Kidderpore in south Kolkata later today.
 
Zeeshan is now coach for India. A member of India’s Davis Cup teams from the late 1950s to the mid 1960s, Ali holds a 9-2 win-loss record in the tournament. He was proficient in both singles and doubles and played alongside Ramanathan Krishnan, Naresh Kumar, Premjit Lall and Jaidip Mukerjea.
 
In 1955, Ali won the junior national championship and made it to the semifinals of junior Wimbledon.
 
After retirement, he played a key role in guiding Ramesh Krishnan, Vijay Amritraj, Leander Paes among others.
 
He even guided Sania Mirza in her formative years. His son Zeeshan Ali was a former national champion and the erstwhile coach of Indian Davis Cup team. (UNI)