Fend-off six match points before overcoming the spirited second seed Vikash Singh

Sumit Pal Singh lived up to his top billing by winning the boys’ title at the adidas-TTT National sub-junior (under-14) tennis championship here on Saturday. The 13-year-old had to fend-off six match points before overcoming the spirited second seed, Vikash Singh, in three pulsating sets 5-7, 6-2, 7-6(7).

Fortunes swung back and forth in a match that lasted over two hours. Sumit took the early lead going 3-1 up. But, an aggressive Vikash, never shy of going for the lines, broke back in the eighth game to restore parity at 4-4. With one more break in the 12th game he clinched the first set 7-5.

The 12-year-old from West Bengal led 2-0 in the second set before, in a dramatic turn of events, the top seed reeled off six consecutive games to take the set 6-2. A slew of unforced errors from Vikash’s racquet helped Sumit immensely and he capitalised on it with some winners of his own.

The third set unfolded the same way the second had but with roles reversed. Sumit broke to go 2-1 up but Vikash came back to lead 5-2. On Sumit’s serve, Vikash had the first two of his seven match points, but squandered both. Serving at 5-3, he saw his service broken and it took a tie-break to decide the champion.

Sumit came up with his best when it mattered the most. Four of the six match points were saved with two exquisite lobs and deft drops each. He took the tie-break 9-7 on his first match point when a forehand from Vikash flew long.

Earlier in the day, local girl G.S. Vasavi beat top-seeded Snehal Mane 7-6(6), 6-2 to pocket the girls’ title.

The results:

Final: Boys: Singles: Sumit Pal Singh bt Vikash Singh 5-7, 6-2, 7-6(7).

Girls: Singles: G.S. Vasavi bt Snehal Mane 7-6(6), 6-2.

Doubles: R. Sai Avanthika & Snehal bt Shivani Ingle & Aastha Dargude 6-4, 6-2.

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