Bengaluru Open 2020: Bad day for Indians at KSLTA but Paes enters doubles semi-finals
Eighth-seed Sumit Nagal and seventh-seed Prajnesh Gunneswaran bowed out of the men's singles competition of the ATP Challenger event at the Karnataka Lawn Tennis Association courts while Paes and doubles partner Matthew Ebden advanced to the semifinals.
Saketh Myneni was the first to fall - the Andhra Pradesh lad went down against Thomas Fabbiano with the scoreline reading 6-4, 5-7, 6-2 in favour of the 30-year-old Italian.
Seventeenth seed Ramkumar Ramanathan followed suit after a 7-6, 6-1 defeat at the hands of Ilya Ivashka of Belarus.
Slovenian Blaz Rola then got the better of Sumit Nagal who was seeded three places higher in the tournament rankings. The 2015 Junior Wimbledon champion who is seeded eighth at Bengaluru crashed out after a 3-6, 3-6 loss against Rola who is ranked 149th in the world.
Prajnesh Gunneswaran was expected to breeze through against Benjamin Bonzi but contrary to expectations the Frenchman registered an emphatic 7-6, 6-0 win, clinching the second set in just over 20 minutes.
The seventh-seed stated after the match that he was unable to figure out what went wrong in the pre-quarterfinal tie.
“I was not comfortable coming into the match. I did not play as I wanted to. I am still trying to figure out what was wrong. I was just able to co-ordinate my movements. I wanted to play aggressive shots but most of the time I was defending. I should have broken him a little earlier in the first set. And after going 4-1 up with a down the line shot, I thought I was back into my elements. He still played well but I did not do anything to match him.”
Paes, however, bucked the trend and advanced to the semifinals of the doubles event along with Aussie partner Matthew Abden.
The Indo-Australian beat pair third seeds Andre Goransson and Christopher Rungkat 7-5, 0-6, 10-7.
Leander Paes is in his last year of professional tennis and has chosen to call his campaign 'The Last Roar.'
The Indian challenge in the singles section has come to an end with the string of defeats on Thursday.
 Thomas Fabbiano (ITA) bt Saketh Myneni (IND) 6-4, 5-7, 6-2; 
Ilya Ivashka (BLR) bt  Ramkumar Ramanathan (IND) 7-6(2), 6-1
 Blaz Rola (SLO) bt  Sumit Nagal (IND) 6-3, 6-3
Benjamin Bonzi (FRA) bt  Prajnesh Gunneswaran (IND) 7-6(5), 6-0
 Yuichi Sugita (JPN) bt [WC] Niki Poonacha (IND) 7-5, 6-3
 Stefano Travaglia (ITA) bt  Mohamed Safwat (EGY) 6-2, 7-6(5)
 James Duckworth (AUS) vs Frederico Ferreira Silva (POR) 7-6 (9), 6-1
Julian Ocleppo (ITA) bt Sidharth Rawat (IND) 7-5, 6-4
Published 13 Feb 2020, 21:34 IST