The Telegraph
Wednesday , February 13 , 2013
Since 1st March, 1999
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Fariz knocks out Rawat

- Shivika begins campaign in style; Rupesh wins
Shivika Burman, at the South Club, on Tuesday. A Telegraph picture

Calcutta: Fariz Mohammed hogged the limelight on the second day of the National Grass-court Tennis Championship at the South Club, here.

The Tamil Nadu lad created the biggest shock on a day of upsets as he came back from a set down to knock out top seed Siddharth Rawat of Uttar Pradesh 3-6, 6-3, 6-4, on Tuesday.

The unheralded Fariz was, obviously, elated after winning the battle which lasted for an hour and 55 minutes.

“Last time we played it was two years back and I had defeated him. Today, I did not wilt even when I was a set down. I think that made a difference,” said Fariz.

While Fariz was cynosure in the men’s, local favourite Shivika Burman was the star in the women’s.

Coming back into competitive tennis after a 14-month layoff — she was recuperating from a shoulder injury — she ousted the second seed Shweta Rana of Delhi 6-3, 7-6 (5).

“I was a bit nervous because of lack of match practice… But I settled down well after taking a 3-0 lead in the first set,” Shivika said.

The 23-year-old believes the shoulder injury was a blessing in disguise. “While I was out of action, I analysed my game. And I made some minor changes to my game… I changed the style of my service.

“Earlier, I used to be a counter-puncher… Now, I am going for the kill and I am playing more aggressive tennis.”

However, Treta Bhattacharya and Amrita Mukherjee — the other two local challengers — conceded contrasting defeats.

Rushmi Chakravarthy showed vintage class to beat seventh seed Manya Nagpal 6-2, 6-2.

Local challenger Rupesh Roy, who was given a wildcard, played sublime tennis to beat the fourth seed Shahbaz Khan of Maharashtra 6-4, 6-0.