Prerna to face Rishika
Jeevan sets up Khade date in menís singles final
Prerna Bhambri overcame a fighting Sri Vaishnavi Peddireddy 6-4, 6-4 to set up a women’s singles title clash with her doubles partner Rishika Sunkara in the Fenesta† National tennis championship at DLTA complex here on Monday.
The two Delhi girls come from the stable of coach Aditya Sachdeva and train at the Sirifort Sports Complex. Rishika saw off an erratic Natasha Palha 6-2, 6-1 in the other semifinals.
†However, Prerna and Rishika ran out of luck later in the day, losing the doubles final to Treta Bhattacharya and Palha 4-6, 6-0, 6-10.
In the men’s singles top seed Jeevan Nendunchezhiyan barely broke sweat during his 6-1, 6-0 victory over third-seeded Siddharth Rawat and now meets an eager Arjun Khade who got the better of Ramkumar Ramanathan 6-3, 6-2.
Both Prerna and Vaishnavi struggled with their rhythms and the match witnessed numerous break of serves. Prerna, however, recovered to drive some rasping winners off both the flanks and took the first set by breaking 17-year-old in the tenth game. The second set tread the similar pattern but Vaishnavi, though struggling with her serve, stepped up the pace. Prerna was up for the challenge and kept Vaishnavi on the move.
The errors continued to flow from the teenager’s racquet and a shanked backhand return in the tenth game gave Prerna the set and the match.
‘It was the best match for me in the tournament. I was expecting it to be tough, it was some good hitting out there. I know her game. It was a high pressure match for both of us but I began to serve much better later in the match,” said Prerna.
In the second men’s semifinals, Khade was challenged only in flashes by Ramanathan, who perished in his attempt to be aggressive than consistent.
“I expected him (Ramanathan) to play a lot better. He is good player but it was a tight match and I am happy to be through. I have played Jeevan before, he is smart and a different kind of player. He moves really well. I will have to be patient and focus on my game,” said Khade .
Ramanathan somewhat made up for the loss after he and Mohit Mayur Jaya-prakash stunned top seeds Kaza Vinayak Sharma and Vivek Shokeen 5-7, 7-6(5), 10-3 to clinch the men’s doubles title.
Both the finals will be played on Saturday with Sania Mirza giving away the prize as the chief guest.
Results: (prefix denotes seeding): Men’s singles (semifinals): 1-Jeevan Nendunchezhiyan bt 3-Siddharth Rawat 6-1, 6-0; Arjun Khade bt Ramkumar Ramanathan 6-3, 6-2.
Doubles (final): 3-Mohit Mayur Jayaprakash/ Ramkumar Ramanathan bt 1-Kaza Vinayak Sharma/ Vivek Shokeen 5-7, 7-6(5), 10-3.
Women’s singles (semifinals): 1-Rishika Sunkara bt 3-Natasha Palha 6-2, 6-1; 2-Prerna Bhambri bt Sri Vaishnavi Peddireddy 6-4, 6-4.
Doubles (final): Treta Bhattacharya/ Natasha Palha bt 3-Prerna Bhambri/ Rishika Sunkara 6-4, 0-6, 10-6.
Under-18: Boys (semifinals): 1-Rishab Aggarwal bt Neeraj Elangovan 6-1, 6-1; 3-Karan Salwan bt Shaikh Abdullah 6-3, 4-6, 7-6.
Girls (semifinals): Pranjala Yadlapalli bt Nehal Sahni 6-3, 6-2; Tarannum Handa bt C Sai Samitha 3-6, 7-6 (9), 7-5.
Doubles (final): 3-Himani Mor/ Vanshika Sawhney bt Jahnvi Gupta/ Vineeta Singh 6-2, 6-3.