Rohan Bopanna on Saturday came down heavily on the All India Tennis Association for failing to send his nomination for this year’s Arjuna Award before the deadline. The AITA had announced in June that it would be recommending Bopanna for the award after the 37-year-old won his first Grand Slam title – the 2017 French Open mixed doubles crown along with Canadian partner Gabriela Dabrowski.

However, Saketh Myneni is the only tennis player in this year’s Arjuna Award recommendation list, which was released earlier this week. Bopanna congratulated Myneni for winning the award, but slammed the AITA for robbing him of the opportunity.

“We professional tennis players put in a lot to bring laurels to our country,” Bopanna said in a statement. “And no one could question otherwise. However, it is when the system (the Tennis Association in this case) functions sloppily that is not only disrespectful but also robs one of the hope of a deserving acknowledgement.”

The 37-year-old said that even though the AITA spread the word in the media that he would be nominated for the prestigious award, the association’s lack of intent seems to be reason behind the failure to do so. He added that even though his record in the past 10 years has been consistent, the association did not find him worthy of the award during the period.

“I am calling out to the lack of professionalism and efficiency by AITA for not sending my nomination for the Arjuna Award before the deadline,” the statement further read. “I have witnessed many such excuses for the past decade (while I was eligible and my record didn’t falter) and then too, have never stood for it.”

He added, “AITA gained a lot of traffic in the media for claiming they would be nominating me for the Arjuna Award this year and for it to not materialise due to the disorder in the ‘Order’ makes me question this so much more. Especially since the criteria to be nominated apart from a deserving and consistent performance is also that more than one tennis player can be nominated for the esteemed Award.”

Along with the French Open mixed doubles title, Bopanna also won the Monte Carlo Masters men’s doubles crown with Uruguay’s Pablo Cuevas and the Chennai Open with compatriot Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan.