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$15,000 Chandigarh ITF Futures: Top-seed Yuki Bhambri, second seed Sriram Balji sink in quarterfinals

Suhrid Barua
FEATURED COLUMNIST
Modified 02 May 2013, 17:11 IST
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FILE PHOTO: Vijayant Malik

Top-seed Yuki Bhambri of India suffered a shocking quarterfinal defeat at the hands of fellow country-mate Vijayant Malik in the $15,000 ITF Futures tennis tournament being played at the Chandigarh Lawn Tennis Association Tennis Stadium in Chandigarh.

The seventh seeded Vijayant, ranked 528 in the world, stunned Yuki 6-4, 6-0 to set up a semifinal meeting with eight seeded Ranjeet Virali-Murugesan.

Vijayant made a strong start against the much fancied Yuki – serving solidly and essaying razor-sharp returns to unsettle the latter.

He broke Yuki’s serve to close the first set at 6-4. Vijayant made a mockery of the seeding book, literally decimating the number one seed in the second set winning it at love.

Yuki, who is the second highest ranked men’s singles player after Somdev Devvarman, struggled with his serves and committed numerous unforced errors which did not help his cause.

Yuki, ranked 262nd in the ATP rankings, earlier coasted past 933rd ranked Austin Karosi of the USA 6-2, 6-1 to make it to the quarterfinals.

He had earlier disposed off Abhijeet Tiwari 6-3, 6-1 in the first round.

Eight seeded Ranjeet Virali-Murugesan overcame a first set resistance to prevail over fellow Indian Rakshit Rishi 7-5, 6-0 to romp into the singles semifinals.

The tournament witnessed another big upset when second seeded N Sriram Balaji was knocked out by fifth seed Saketh Myneni 2-6, 0-6.

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Balaji, ranked 327 in the world, failed to live up to his expectations, going down tamely in a one-sided quarterfinal match.

Saketh earlier put it across Kunal Anand 7-5, 6-2 to reach the quarterfinals.  He had shown the door to fellow Indian Saurabh Patil 7-5, 6-1 in the first round.

Saketh would now take on the winner of the quarterfinal match between fourth seed Vishnu Vardhan and sixth seed N Prashanth.

Vishnu Vardhan got the better of Ashwin Vijayragavan 6-3, 7-6 (1) to reach the quarterfinals.

N Prashanth pipped R Bisht 6-2, 6-2 to enter the quarterfinals.

It may be worth recalling that India’s Ankita Raina had finished runners-up in the recent $10,000 ITF Lucknow Futures tennis tournament in Lucknow, losing to Japan’s Emi Mutaguchi.

The Lucknow event was Ankita’s fourth consecutive ITF Futures final.

The national grasscourt champion had clinched the Chennai Futures a week before the Lucknow tourney.

The Gujarat girl, who is now based in Pune, had also finished runners-up in the two ITF Futures tourneys in Hyderabad last March.

The 489th ranked Indian had pipped Anushka Bhargava in the opening round, before sailing past Preethi Ujjini in the second round to secure her passage to the quarterfinals.

Published 02 May 2013, 17:07 IST
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