Sourabh Verma produced a stunning show of resilience to win two matches and enter the men's singles main draw of the $350,000 OUE Singapore Open Superseries as the qualifying rounds got completed at the Singapore Indoor Stadium on Tuesday. Later in the day, Ashwini Ponnappa and B Sumeeth Reddy made it to the second round of mixed doubles while Yogendran Krishnan and Prajakta Sawant bowed out.
The reigning national champion Verma, seeded third, beat Israel's Misha Zilberman, 21-13, 23-21 in the first round. The final round turned out to be a very gruelling affair as Verma lost the first game narrowly, 27-29 to the 93rd ranked Thai Pannawit Thongnuam.
The World No. 41 came back to pocket the very competitive second game 21-18 and then held his nerves for a 27-29, 21-18, 21-18 win in 1 hour 8 minutes. He will now face the 25th ranked Anthony Sinisuka Ginting of Indonesia in the first round.
Arjun MR and Shlok Ramchandran enter main draw
In mixed doubles, Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and K Maneesha notched up a couple of wins to enter the main draw. The 16-year-old Rankireddy, however, had mixed fortunes as he crashed out in the final round of qualifying in men's doubles.
He and Chirag Shetty upset the third seeds Sze Fei Goh and Nur Izzuddin of Malaysia in a marathon match, 18-21, 21-19, 21-17. But they could not replicate that effort in the next round and went down 8-21, 15-21 to Hendra Setiawan and Boon Heong Tan.
Arjun MR and Shlok Ramchandran fared much better and made it through to the Round of 32. The fourth seeds got a walkover in their first match following which they beat the Malaysian combine of Nur Mohd Azriyn Ayub and Jagdish Singh, 21-19, 21-18.
Ponnappa and Sumeeth Reddy later on won India’s first main draw match at the Singapore Open when they triumphed 21-13, 21-14 over Venkat Gaurav Prasad and Juhi Dewangan in an all-Indian first round.
Sawant and her Malaysian partner Krishnan, in contrast, could not provide much resistance and lost 15-21, 12-21 to the Hong Kong team of Tam Chun Hei and NG Tsz Yau.
On Wednesday, World No. 2 PV Sindhu will lead the Indian challenge at the Singapore Open as she takes on former All Emgland Championships winner Nozomi Okuhara.Published 11 Apr 2017, 18:32 IST