In a tale of contrasting fortunes for India’s top two players, the Pune Challenger champion Yuki Bhambri entered the quarter-finals of the $100, 000 Bengaluru Open but the Pune runner-up Ramkumar Ramanathan departed from this ATP Challenger tournament held on the hardcourts at the Karnataka State Lawn Tennis Association grounds on Wednesday. The third seeded Bhambri needed 1 hour 28 minutes to see off Spain’s World No. 258 Pedro Martinez, 6-2, 7-6(0) to set up a last-eight clash with fellow Indian, Prajnesh Gunneswaran.
Bhambri converted four of the eight break point opportunities that he got and finished with a total of 71 points. Martinez could break Yuki’s serve only twice and had a total of 57 points.
20-year-old Sumit Nagal also made it to the quarter-finals, courtesy of a thrilling 6-4, 4-6, 7-5 win over the 282nd ranked Brydan Klein and he now has an uphill task ahead as he meets the top seed Blaz Kavcic.
The World No. 102 Slovenian staved off a challenge from the 403rd ranked Mario Viella Martinez to register a 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 second round win.
Ramanathan squanders a one-set lead
World No. 139 Ramkumar Ramanathan squandered a one-set lead to succumb to a 7-6(3), 2-6, 4-6 defeat to Jay Clarke, ranked 140 places below the Indian. Ramanathan’s serve let him down in the last couple of sets and he committed five double faults in the second set alone.
The 23-year-old Indian had to pay the price for not being able to convert any of the six break point opportunities that he was presented with. In contrast, Clarke could make use of three out of the seven break points that he had.
Clarke next takes on Ante Pavic, who ousted the fourth seeded Elias Ymer, 6-3, 6-7(2), 7-6(5) in a 2 hour 18 minute clash. Eighth seeded Aleksandr Nedovyesov also went out, following a 3-6, 6-2, 3-6 loss to the 420th ranked Antoine Escoffier.
Sharan continues to shine
Doubles ace Divij Sharan’s great end of season continues as he booked his place in the semi-finals of the Bengaluru Open. Sharan has teamed up with Mikhail Elgin and the two have received the top seeding at this tournament.
They notched up a commanding 6-3, 6-3 win over the pair of Nagal and Ymer to set up a semi-final showdown with N Sriram Balaji and Vishnu Vardhan. The latter easily beat Ramanathan and Gunneswaran 6-3, 6-3 in an all-Indian quarter-final.Published 23 Nov 2017, 00:53 IST