Unseeded names continued to upset the hierarchy in the National grass-court tennis here at the South Club on Tuesday.
The men’s top seed Sidharth Rawat was shown the door by the unheralded Mohammad Fariz of Tamil Nadu while the unseeded Rupesh Roy gave something to cheer for the local crowd when he dispatched the fourth-seeded Shahbaaz Khan of Maharashtra.
The seasoned Nitten Kirtane, the second seed, is the lone survivor after the first round mayhem as third-seed Chandril Sood had lost on the first day on Monday.
The women’s fixtures also saw an upset when the top ranked player of Bengal, Shivika Burman, ended the hopes of second seed Shweta Rana of Delhi. The other seed to fall on the same day was Manya Nagpal of Uttar Pradesh.
Manya’s defeat was not surprising as she lost to the defending champion and one of the finest players on grass in the country, Rushmi Chakravarthy.
The upper crust of seeds mostly survived with top seed Ankita Raina of Gujarat, third seed Prarthana Thombre of Maharashtra and fourth seed Nidhi Chilumula making it to the next round with comfortable wins.
Mohammad Fariz showed fine temperament and court-craft to outlast Rawat in the three-set duel lasting 115 minutes. Fariz was not in his element as Rawat quickly wrapped up the first set 6-3 breaking the former in the sixth game.
Things turned the other way from the second set when Fariz broke Rawat thrice to run up a 5-1 lead. The Tamil Nadu player built on the advantage to win 6-3.
The decider saw Rawat enjoying the early advantage (3-1) with a break of serve in the fourth. But Fariz broke back in the fifth and won the next three to end Rawat’s hopes. Fariz won the decider 6-4 to complete the most impressive win of the day.
The results (first round): Men: Fariz Mohammed (TN) bt Siddharth Rawat (UP) 3-6, 6-3, 6-4; Mohit Mayur Jayaprakash (TN) bt Saneesh Mani Mishra (UP) 6-0, 6-0; Rupesh Roy (Ben) bt Shahbaz Khan (Mah) 6-4, 6-0.
Women: Ankita Raina (Guj) bt Shahan Shetty (Kar) 6-1, 6-0; Victoria Chehal (NTA) bt Sneha Padamata (AP) 7-5, 6-4; A. Amol Warrick (Kar) bt Smriti Joon (Har) 6-1, 3-6, 6-1; Rushmi Chakravarthy (TN) bt Manya Nagpal (UP) 6-2, 6-2; Bhuvana Kalva (AP) bt Amrita Mukherjee (Ben) 6-2, 6-0; Nidhi Chilumula (AP) bt Megha Sherawat (Del) 6-3, 7-6(2); Sharmada Balu (Kar) bt Shalaka Uddur Manjunath (Kar) 6-1, 6-2; Namita Bal (Mah) bt Varunya Chandrasekhar (Kar) 7-6(5), 6-2; Nityaraj Baburaj (TN) bt Sayali Bhilare (Mah) 6-3, 6-1; Arantxa Andrady (Del) bt Sagarika Phadke (Mah) 6-7(3), 7-5, 6-2; Natash Palha (Goa) bt Treta Bhattacharya (Ben) 4-6, 6-4, 6-2; Shivika Burman (Ben) bt Shweta Rana (Del) 6-3, 7-6(5).
Keywords: National grass-court tennis