Vaishnavi shocks top seed Rishika

Sri Vaishnavi Peddi Reddy is among the rare Indian women tennis players to have the opportunity to train with a foreign coach. 

The 19-year-old has signed a full-time contract with renowned Australian coach Bob Brett and began working with him in March. The results of the association were evident on Thursday as the Hyderabadi packed off top seed Rishika Sunkara 7-6(5), 4-6,   6-4 in the women’s singles quarterfinals of the Fenesta Open National Tennis Championships.

There were upsets in the men’s singles draw as well. Delhi boy Siddharth Rawat shocked third seed and defending champion Mohit Mayur Jayaprakash 6-4, 6-0.

 Vaishnavi, however, stole the show. Well-built with an attacking game, Vaishnavi, seeded sixth, did well to go up after a tightly fought opening set and lead 4-1 in the second, only to allow Rishika win five straight games to take the match into the decider. “As I took the lead in the second set, I begin to think that she is a much better player! It is my mind that I need to work on,” she smiled.

She also lagged 2-4 in the final set but bounced back with power-packed groundstrokes, embracing both the flanks, to take four games on trot. “It was a good win and I have a good feeling about it. I hardly played in the last two years as I was nursing a shoulder injury and then dengue. I began training in January before joining Bob full time in March. I had known him since I was five and training with him has made a lot of difference. One of the coaches appointed by Bob  is travelling with me,” said Vaishnavi, who trains with Bob in Italy and is currently based in London.

She next plays Karman Kaur Thandi, an opponent against whom she had lost in a bitter quarterfinal clash, stretching three hours and 12 minutes, in the $10,000 ITF tournament in August. 

Karman, seeded seventh, took out fourth-seeded Vaniya Dangwal 6-4, 6-4.  In other women singles quarters, second-seeded Shweta Rana beat fifth-seeded Amrita Mukherjee 6-1, 1-6, 6-3 while third-seeded Prerna Bhambri advanced with a 6-3, 6-2 win over Sharon Paul.

In the men’s competition, top seed Karunuday Singh rustled up a win in straight sets beating former champion 6-4, 6-2.  He will now play Siddharth in the semifinals on Friday.

Fourth-seed Nitten Kirrtane also bowed out losing to Ronit Bisht 0-6, 1-6. Ronit will play second-seeded Vishnu Vardhan who made short work of Chandril Sood, winning 6-1, 6-1.


Quarterfinals: Men’s singles: 1-Karunuday Singh bt VM Ranjeet  6-4,6-2, 2-Vishnu Vardhan bt Chandril Sood 6-1,6-1, Ronit Bisht bt 4-Nitten Kirrtane 6-0,6-4, Siddharth Rawat bt 3-Mohit M Jayaprakash 6-4,6-0

Women's singles: Vaishnavi Pedi Reddy bt 1-Rishika Sunkara 7-6(5),4-6,6-4, 2-Shweta Rana  bt Amrita Mukherjee 6-1,1-6,6-3, 3-Prerna Bhambri bt Sharon Paul 6-3,6-2, Karman K Thandi bt 4-Vaniya Dangwal  6-4,6-4.

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