ISLAMABAD - International Tennis Federation (ITF), as per expectations, has acted in the interest of their personal agenda and justified the stance of Australia-based Sri Lankan origin referee Ashita Ajigala who awarded the Davis Cup Asia-Oceania Group II home tie to New Zealand sighting the poor state of playing surface at the neutral venue of Myanmar. Pakistan Tennis Federation (PTF) president Syed Kaleem Imam lodged a very strong protest with the ITF over the issue and demanded a comprehensive and impartial inquiry into the whole episode. He had detailed conversations with head of Davis Cup and Fed Cup of ITF Justine Albert, who assured of conducting a fair inquiry, but to the utter disappointment, the ITF official defended the stance of the referee in their reply to the PTF through email. The decision was very much expected to go against Pakistan as everyone is fully aware of the fact Australians and Kiwis have cordial relations and they work for safeguarding each others’ interests. It was the ITF’s duty to appoint a neutral and unbiased referee for the tie but the hidden purposes were different. Although the ITF had to bow down to intensive pressure and arguments of the PTF and had to accept the right of Pakistan to host the tie at neutral venue, but they didn't accept it in true letter and spirit and intensely appoint a referee, who had little experience of conducting such an important event. If one agrees with the referee’s point of view that the playing surface was not ideal for conducting the tie, then why he allowed the matches to go ahead. He should have consulted the ground staff before announcing any decision, but the intensions were very much clear as he bowed down to the pressure of New Zealand captain, who guessing his team’s pathetic condition and almost certain loss, suddenly lodged complaint with the referee who duly obliged by awarding the tie to Kiwis. In her reply to the PTF, Justine stated that the condition of the match court in Myanmar had been a serious concern since few days and the referee had made many requests to the local organisers to take steps to improve the condition of the court, as he was very concerned for the safety of the players. She said the original intended match court had to be switched with the practice court because it was very soft. She accepted that the switch was approved by the ITF officiating department despite the court was not meeting the court dimensions and requirements. “The main issue was that the ground staff did not have the professional experience required to maintain a court of the standard for a Davis Cup tie. Equipment-wise, the court covers, which had been promised for the start of the tie, were not in place until a day before the start of the tie and the heavy roller that had been requested since Tuesday morning, only arrived on the match day morning,” she added. She accepted that the play started as per schedule but the court deteriorated further mid-way through the first match, in particular just behind one baseline clumps of grass started coming away. One clump came off completely later in the match. All these above mentioned clarifications made by the ITF official were not more than lame excuses and had nothing to do with the actual facts. The matter of the fact is that the ITF had committed a huge blunder and now they are just pursuing with the policy of hiding the original facts and try to hush up the entire issue. It is the national and moral responsibility of the PTF president to plead Pakistan case strongly as he has backing of the entire nation. It is now the matter of prestige of the millions of Pakistanis, who have the right of knowing the exact facts which are that Pakistan was deprived of a sure shot victory by none other than the ITF and their blue-eyed fully supported referee, who changed the entire course of the match just for his malicious designs.