Chennai, Feb 4 (IANS) Top seed Somdev Devvarman overcame young Ramkumar Ramanathan who conceded in the second set when trailing 5-7, after losing the first 4-6, following an attack of cramps in the first round of the Shriram Capital PL Reddy Memorial ATP Challenger tennis tournament here Tuesday.
Devvarman, India’s No.1 player and who had lost to Ramanathan in the first round of the Chennai Open at the same venue last month, kept his composure to see off the precocious 19-year old who promised much, but eventually succumbed to cramps.
Devvarman, ranked 97, saved two break points in the fifth game of the first set after seven deuces and Ramanathan held for 3-3.
Ramamanathan’s strong serving and big forehand, especially on short balls had Devvarman off balance. Devvarman scrambled to hold on to his serve and then nearly broke Ramanathan in the 10th game but could not convert any of the six set points as the youngster held for 5-all.
The effort seemed to have taken the wind out of Ramanathan as Devvarman held serve and then broke on the second set point in the 12th game.
The second set started in a similar fashion to the first before Ramanathan broke with ggressive returns in the fifth game and then held for 4-2 lead.
At 4-3, Ramanathan asked and received a medical break after which he never recovered. In the 10th game, at 30-all he cramped once again and conceded the match to a relieved Devvarman.
On an adjacent court, qualifier Sanam Singh, playing solid tennis caused an upset by defeating sixth seed Guez and will take on Balaji who outplayed another qualifier Prajnesh Gunneswaran.
Singles (first round): 1-Somdev Devvarman bt WC-Ramkumar Ramanathan 7-5, 5-4 conceded; Q-Michael Venus (NZL) bt WC-Jeevan Neduchezhiyan 7-6 (3), 6-7 (1), 6-1; Steven Diez (CAN) bt 5-Radu Albot (MDA) 6-1, 3-6, 7-4; 4-Illya Marchenko (UKR) bt Daniel Munoz-De La Nava (ESP) 7-5, 7-5; Lucas Pouille (FRA) bt Ti Chen (TPE) 6-3, 6-3; Gerard Granollers (ESP) bt Q-Victor Baluda (Rus) 6-3, 6-2; 7-Yuki Bhambri bt Liang-Chi Huang (TPE) 6-2, 6-4; 8-Thomas Fabbiano (ITA) bt Theodorous Angelinos (GRE) 6-3, 6-0; Saketh Myneni bt Mohamed Safwat (EGY) 6-4, 6-2; Alexander Kudryavtsev (RUS) bt Iliya Bozoljac (SRB) 6-1, 6-2; Blaz Rola (SLO) bt Augustin Velotti (ARG) 7-5, 7-6 (5); Q-Sanam Singh bt 6-David Guez (FRA) 6-4, 7-5; WC-N Sriram Balaji bt Q-Prajnesh Gunneswaran 6-3, 6-3; Rui Machado (POR) bt Tsung-Hua Yang (TPE) 3-6, 6-4, 6-3; 2-Evgeny Donskoy (RUS) bt Axel Michon (FRA) 6-2, 6-3.
Doubles: 3-Ruben Gonzales (PHI) / Artem Sitak (NZL) bt David Guez (FRA) / Lucus Pouille (FRA) 6-2, 6-0; N Sriram Balaji / Blaz Rola (SLO) bt 1-Sanchai Ratiwatana (Tha) / Sonchat Ratiwatana (Tha) 5-7, 7-5 (10-6); 3-Thomas Fabiano (ITA) / Augustin Velotti (ARG) bt WC-Prajnesh Gunneswaran / Mohit Mayur Jayaprakash 6-2, 6-0.Published 04 Feb 2014, 20:22 IST