Sharath Kamal reigns supreme

Madhurika Patkar also claims her first title of the season

Published - October 09, 2018 09:58 pm IST - PUNE

Winners:  Manush Shah (youth boys), Madhurika Patkar (women), Akula Sreeja (youth girls) and Sharath Kamal (men) took the big prize on Tuesday.

Winners: Manush Shah (youth boys), Madhurika Patkar (women), Akula Sreeja (youth girls) and Sharath Kamal (men) took the big prize on Tuesday.

Sharath Kamal, whose form in the 11Sports-West Zone National-ranking table tennis tournament had been erratic, showed his class in the final on Tuesday.

Playing against qualifier Anirban Ghosh, the 36-year-old was in sublime form as he overpowered the 19-year-old 11-6, 11-8, 11-3, 11-5 to bag his first title of the season.

Madhurika Patkar, too, claimed her first crown, with a 7-11, 10-12, 11-8, 11-9, 12-10, 11-5 win over Divya Deshpande in a drab women’s final. Earlier, Madhurika had put it across Manika Batra, the second seed, in six games in the semifinals.

Anirban was in too much awe of his opponent to make a match of it and Sharath took complete control. Seeded 13th, Sharath served well and received Anirban’s serve equally well. Sharath was also brilliant on the counters.

Earlier, National champion Sharath had escaped from the jaws of defeat in the semifinals, staving off two match points.

Despite trailing 4-9 and 8-10 in the seventh game against A. Amalraj, Sharath roared back to win.

“For me, the semifinals [against Amal] was the final. He [Anirban] had too much respect for me and I used it completely. But I must say he has a bright future,” said Sharath.

The women’s final saw Madhurika and Divya struggling to find their ‘A’ games.

Not quite an attacking player, Divya relies more on placements and deception. The eighth seed gave a glimpse of her talent on quite a few occasions. Though error-prone, third-seeded Madhurika got her attacking rhythm at crucial junctures to pocket her first title.

“I was struggling to find my rhythm till the East Zone in Guwahati [she reached the final]. It is a great motivation to win my first title ahead of the Belgium Open Challenge,” said Madhurika.

The results:

Men: Final: A. Sharath Kamal (PSPB) bt Anirban Ghosh (RSPB) 11-6, 11-8, 11-3, 11-5; Semifinals: Sharath bt A. Amalraj (PSPB) 12-14, 7-11, 11-9, 14-12, 11-7, 9-11, 13-11; Anirban bt Sanil Shetty (PSPB) 11-9, 11-9, 10-12, 11-9, 9-11, 8-11, 11-9.

Youth Boys: Final: Manush Shah (Guj) bt Jeet Chandra (Har) 11-6, 12-10, 12-10, 13-11.

Women: Final: Madhurika Patkar (PSPB) bt Divya Deshpande (PSPB) 7-11, 10-12, 11-8, 11-9, 12-10, 11-5; Semifinals: Divya bt Sagarika Mukherjee (RSPB) 11-6, 11-7, 11-1, 9-11, 11-6; Madhurika bt Manika (PSPB) 10-12, 11-1, 13-11, 6-11, 11-9, 12-10.

Youth Girls: Final: Sreeja Akula (RBI) bt Prapti Sen (WB) 11-7, 5-11, 11-9, 14-16, 11-9, 9-11, 12-10 .

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