|Sri Vaishnavi, on Wednesday
Calcutta: The ongoing National Grass Court Tennis Championship is supposed to be Sri Vaishnavi Peddi Reddy’s comeback tournament.
After missing the entire 2013 due to injuries and dengue, the Hyderabad girl was determined to make a mark on her favourite surface. Wednesday showed she is on the right track as the unseeded Sri Vaishnavi ousted top seed Shweta C Rana of Delhi 6-3, 6-2, to enter the quarter finals, at the South Club here.
In the first set, Rana was broken early at 1-1 and again at 5-3 as Sri Vaishnavi took the opening set 6-3. In the second, Sri Vaishnavi looked even stronger as she took a quick lead of 3-0. Again at 5-2, Rana was broken, without even a single point coming her way.
“She was trying too many things today (Wednesday). Grass is my favourite surface and I knew if I stick to my plans, I will have the last laugh. I kept her moving on both sides and that probably unsettled her,” Sri Vaishnavi said.
In a battle between two local favourites, Rupesh Roy played some outstanding tennis to overcome the seventh-seeded Saurav Sukul 6-3, 2-6, 7-6 (5) after 2 hours and 12 minutes. And the crowd enjoyed every moment of it.
Sukul was broken twice in the first set, which he eventually lost 3-6. In the second, Sukul made a comeback by breaking Rupesh once at 3-2 and again at 5-2, thereby winning the second by 6-2.
The decider saw a swing of luck after Sukul led 4-0. Rupesh regained his composure and played flawless tennis to make it 4-4.
In the tie-breaker, Rupesh was leading 6-0, from where Sukul played a few amazing winners to narrow the lead to one point. But a forehand error saw last year’s runner-up crashing out.
The match between Tamil Nadu’s Nithyaraj Baburaj and Sneha Padamata seemed like never-ending. And after three hours of gritty battle, Nithyaraj won 6-3, 3-6, 7-5.
Men’s: Vijay Sundar Prashant (1, TN) bt T Elwin Anthony (TN) 6-3, 6-3; Ashwin Vijayragavan (AP) bt Shaikh Abdullah (AP) 6-1, 6-2; Vishnu Vardhan (3,TN) bt Tejas Chaukulkar (Mah) 6-1, 6-2; Suraj Prabodh (Kar) bt Kunal Anand (5-Del) 3-6, 7-6 (4), 7-6 (5); Rupesh Roy (WB) bt Saurav Sukul (7-WB) 6-3, 2-6, 7-6 (5); Chandril Sood (4, UP) bt Abhinansu Borthakur (Asm) 6-3, 6-1; Nitten Kirrtane (6, Mah) bt Sagar Manjanna (Kar) 6-3, 6-1; Jayaprakash Mohit Mayur (2, TN) bt Sasikumar Mukund (TN) 6-3, 6-3.
Women’s: Sri Vaishnavi Peddi Reddy (AP) bt Shweta C Rana (1-Del) 6-3, 6-2; Nithyaraj Baburaj (8, TN) bt Sneha Padamata (AP) 6-3, 3-6, 7-5; Sharmada Balu (4, Kar) bt Amrita Mukherjee 6-3, 6-1; Rushmi Chakravarti (7, TN) bt P Sahan Shetty (Kar) 6-2, 6-1; Bhuvana Kalva (5, AP) bt Namita Bal (Mah) 6-0, 6-0; Nidhi Chilumula (3, AP) bt Rama Neharika (AP) 6-1, 6-1; C Sai Samitha (6, TN) bt Renu Sharma (NTA) 6-4, 6-4; Natasha Palha (2, Goa) bt Shalaka Uddur Manjunath (Kar) 6-0, 6-0