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The ups and downs of Somdev Devvarman's career

Tarish Bhatt
734   //    03 Nov 2012, 15:42 IST

Tennis is an unforgiving sport and if you sustain injury during your peak, that is the most unfortunate thing. Every sportsperson goes through a phase where he protracts an injury; some make a strong comeback while others, not identical. Somdev Devvarman – the highly rated Indian Tennis star – is among the later ones.

India has produced very few top luminous players and Somdev is among those rare ones who have managed to survive in the physically and mentally tough singles arena. Somdev, born in Assam and graduated from the University of Virginia, USA made a significance mark in the singles tennis competition since his college days, and in 2011, he climbed as high as 62 in the ATP world rankings.

Let’s start from the beginning – the days when Somdev started polishing his skills in the University of Virginia and United States where he trained with the likes of Andy Roddick. In the University of Virginia, Somdev became only the 13th in the 124 year history and just the 4th player in last fifty years to win uninterrupted NCAA Singles National Championship in 2007-08. During his undefeated streak, Somdev defeated John Isner and J.P Smith respectively in the finals.

In 2008, Somdev Devvarman turned professional and tasted success in the United States circuit and got a wild card entry in the Vancouver Open where he managed to move till the quarterfinals before losing to Igor Kunitsyn. This was just the beginning for the Indian tennis star.

2009 was the penetrating year for Somdev in the professional circuit. He started the year with a bang after defeating Carlos Moya, Ivo Karlovi? and Rainer Schüttler in the Chennai Open where he eventually lost to Marin Cilic in the hard-fought final. Somdev kept going well and tasted success in the both professional tennis and in the Davis Cup for India. However, he struggled on clay and grass.

2010 became the year to remember for Somdev as the whole nation came to know who Somdev Devvarman was. Somdev won gold medals for India in the Commonwealth Games 2010 (singles) and Asian Games 2010 (singles & doubles). Later in 2011, Somdev Devvarman received the Arjuna award from the Indian government for his exemplary performance in tennis.

2011 became the year of rankings for Somdev Devvarman as he achieved his highest ranking in the ATP tours – 62 – but ended the year after sustaining a shoulder injury. The shoulder injury was the turning point in the life of Somdev who lost his ranking quite considerably and wasn’t able to play in the initial phase of 2012. He made a comeback in the London Olympics after getting a wild card for the singles event, but lost in the first round.

Things got even worse for the Indian tennis sensation as he was not able to win even a single game in six events since his comeback. During this period, he also faced a stunning defeat from a player who was ranked outside 800 in the ATP rankings. As they say, form is temporary but class is permanent, now Somdev is finally regaining form as he has made it to the quarterfinals of USD 75,000 ATP Challenger tournament in the United States.

Somdev’s recent success means, he has now fully recovered from his shoulder injury and is also mentally fit to play against tough opponents. Somdev is currently ranked 733 in the ATP singles ranking and with his latest success, his ranking will increase. Hopefully in near future, he will become eligible to play in the Grand Slams again.

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Tarish Bhatt
A complete sports buff, you name the sport and I am there! A Formula 1 fanatic and big fan of Narain Karthikeyan, Adrian Sutil, Somdev Devvarman and Hugh Jackman!
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