Indian badminton player Pratul Joshi wins Bahrain International Challenge title
October proved to be a very rewarding month for Indian badminton. Not only did Ruthvika Shivani Gadde and Sourabh Varma win singles titles, rising star Pratul Joshi too added his name to the list of Indian singles champions in the badminton circuit.
The 21-year-old emerged victorious at the Bahrain International Challenge 2016 held at Segayya from October 27-30. Joshi, who was the third seed, beat his younger brother – the fourth-seeded Aditya Joshi, 21-17, 12-21, 21-15 in 1 hour to take the title.
This is the first international title for the World No. 114.
The tournament had Indians in the finals in two other categories but they fell at the last hurdle. In men’s doubles, Vighnesh Devlekar and Rohan Kapoor were the top seeds but they were beaten 18-21, 17-21 in the final by the second seeded Russians Evgenij Dremin and Denis Grachev.
Indians reached the women’s doubles final too but could not find success in the summit clash. The pair of Ashna Roy and Farha Mather slumped to a 12-21, 18-21 defeat to fellow unseeded team of Tanisha Crasto and Aprilsasi Putri Lejarsar Variella. The match lasted just 35 minutes.
Joshi survived a tough second round
Pratul, who received a bye in the first round, survived a very tough encounter with local star Heri Setiawan, in the second round. The World No. 114 prevailed 23-21, 16-21, 24-22 in this marathon contest that took an hour to finish.
Joshi then went on to beat three Indians in a row en route to the title. In the quarter-finals, he got the better of Harshit Aggarwal, 21-15, 21-18 and then continued his impressive form to notch up a 21-16, 22-20 victory over Siddharath Thakur in the semi-finals.
Meanwhile, his brother Aditya Joshi had upset the top seed Anand Pawar in straight games in the semi-finals but ran out of steam in the deciding game in the final.