Anahat eases into semis

Anahat Singh is a natural with any racquet in hand, but it appears squash is where her future lies. 

The 10-year-old from Delhi, playing in the girls’ under-13 category, gave a glimpse of her potential in the quarterfinals of the 5Sports Century Bangalore Open squash tournament, dismantling Brithika N of Tamil Nadu 11-1, 11-4, 11-3, here on Monday.

Anahat picked up Badminton first but her desire to be with sister Amira Singh, also a squash player, led her to the sport.

“She was a badminton player and started playing it at the age of six,” her father Gursharan Singh, a lawyer, said. “Her sister was playing squash for India and had to travel. So she (Anahat) also started saying I want to travel and play squash,” he added.

Earlier this month, Anahat became the youngest and sixth Indian to win the esteemed British Junior Open title in girls’ under-11 section in Birmingham.

On Monday, up against an older and taller opponent, Anahat showed no signs of nervousness and powered to a 10-0 lead in the first game. The 12-year-old Brithika did win one point but it made little difference to the outcome.

Brithika attempted to make a comeback in the second game, winning two points early on to go ahead 2-1. Her stay at the top was cut short by Anahat, who claimed six points on the trot to lead 7-2, before winning 11-4.

Anahat continued to pick up points without much trouble in the third game and completed the formalities on the back of a dominant performance. She will face her state-mate Nandini Singh in the semifinals. 

Nandini hammered Shuvra S Borah 11-3, 11-1, 11-1 in another last-eight clash.

Boys: U-17: 1-Didar J J Rebello (HR) bt 5/8-Aaryaman Jaising (MH) 11-5, 11-4, 11-4; 3/4-Navaneeth Prabhu S (TN) bt 5/8-Arnav Mandhana (MH) 11-2, 11-7, 9-11, 11-9; 2-Aryan Khandelwal (MP) bt 5/8-Krish Shah (MH) 11-7, 11-4, 11-6; 3/4-Lakshit B bt 5/8-Sanath Sha 14-12, 17-15, 11-8; U-15: 1-Ekam Singh (CH) bt 5/8-Aarav Gill (PB) 11-7, 11-5, 11-4; Rohan Arya Gondi (TL) bt 5/8-Devay Mehta (MH) 10-12, 10-12, 11-3, 11-9, 11-8; 3/4-Sharan Pbi (MH) bt Farhan Farook (TN) 11-4, 11-7, 11-5; 2-Kabir M D Rebello (HR) bt 9/16-Karan Patel (MH) 11-7, 11-6, 11-5.

U-11: 2-Rahul Sanjay Balakrishnan (KA) bt 9/16-Advaith J (TN) 11-3, 11-5, 11-2; 1-Darshil Parasrampuria (TN) bt 9/16-Siddhant Sharma (DL) 14-12, 11-8, 11-4.

Women: 3/4-Aaradhana (TN) bt Bhadra Asha (KL) 11-5, 11-6, 11-7; Salomi Jayabhanu bt 1-Sachika Balvani Retired; Lakshya Ragavendran bt 3/4-Simar Bharatinder Singh Retired; Mekhala Srivastava bt 2-Mayuri Namasivayam 11-4, 11-3, 11-7. 

Girls: U-17: 1-Megha Bhatia (DL) bt Harshitha UV (TN) 11-3, 11-1, 11-4; 2-Aryaa Ogale (MH) bt 5/8-Aishwaria Payyan (TL) 11-4, 11-3, 11-4; 5/8-Uditi Mishra bt 3/4-Trina Iris 11-7, 11-9, 12-14, 11-8.

U-15: 1-Pooja Arthi R (TN) bt 9/16-Aaryaa Belsare (MH) 11-5, 11-3, 10-12, 11-5; 3/4-S Akshaya Sri (TN) bt 5/8-Advita Sharma (MH) 12-10, 11-5, 14-12; 5/8-Shameena Riaz (TN) bt 2-Gitanjali Vasudevan (TN) 9-11, 12-10, 11-7, 11-5; 5/8-Saniya Jaggi bt Deepika V 11-8, 11-8, 11-9.

U-13: 5/8-Ipsa Mishra (MH) bt 3/4-Sharon Jeffy Doss (TN) 11-5, 11-7, 11-2; Anahat Singh (DL) bt Brithika N (TN) 11-1, 11-4, 11-3; 2-Nandini Jain bt Shuvra S Borah 11-3, 11-1, 11-1; 1-Khushboo bt 5/8-Samairah Raj Bhandare 11-5, 11-4, 11-9. 

U-11: 1-Pia Singh (MH) bt 5/8-Vanshika Karmawat (TN) 11-2, 11-3, 11-3; 5/8-Anika Dubey (MH) bt 2-Chhavi Saran (RJ) 7-11, 11-9, 4-11, 11-6, 11-6.

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Anahat eases into semis

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