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Indian tennis round-up: Ramkumar Ramanathan shocked in Jinan Challenger, Prajnesh Gunneswaran advances in USA

Ramkum
Ramkumar Ramanathan
FEATURED COLUMNIST
Modified 08 Aug 2018, 00:01 IST
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In an aberration from his recent good results, Indian tennis ace Ramkumar Ramanathan crashed out of the Jinan Challenger in China in the first round on Tuesday. The 23-year-old failed to justify his top seeding at this $150, 000 hardcourt event and went down 3-6, 4-6 to Finland’s unheralded Harri Heliovaara, ranked 232 places below the 117th ranked Indian.

Ramanathan, who reached the final of the ATP 250 tournament in Newport recently, produced 15 aces in this first round match that lasted just 61 minutes. His shabby second serve let him down as he managed to win just 52% of his second serve points. In contrast, the Finn’s statistics on his first and second serves were almost even -- 77% and 71% respectively.

Heliovaara also backed up his service with solid returns that helped him convert three out of the eight break points that he got.

At this same tournament, Indian qualifier Manish Sureshkumar’s run came to an end in the first round when he was outplayed 1-6, 3-6 by World No. 239 Duckhee Lee of Korea. In doubles, fourth seeds Arjun Kadhe and Toshihide Matsui were edged 6-3, 5-7, 9-11 by the Chinese pair of Zhe Li and Di Wu.

Double win for Indians in USA

At the Aptos Challenger in the USA, eighth seed Prajnesh Gunneswaran needed three sets to get the better of American wildcard Brandon Holt 4-6, 6-4, 6-2 in 1 hour 57 minutes en route to the second round. Gunneswaran, who rose six spots to 171 this week after qualifying for the ATP 250 event in Los Cabos last week, next takes on Juan Cruz Aragone of USA for a place in the quarter-finals.

In doubles, third seeds Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan and Purav Raja made short work of their wildcard opponents, Hunter and Yates Johnson and notched up a 6-2, 6-4 win to enter the quarter-finals.

Published 08 Aug 2018, 00:01 IST
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