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Ghosal in semis; Joshna exits
December 12, 2006 20:50 IST
India's best bet in the women's section Joshna Chinappa crashed out, losing her quarter-final in straight sets, while National champion Saurav Ghosal got the better of compatriot Ritwik Bhattacharya 3-1 to breeze into the men's semi-finals of the squash competition at the 15th Asian Games in Doha on Tuesday.
Saurav beat Ritwik 9-4, 9-0, 6-9, 9-7 to book a berth in the last four stage, while Wing Yin Chiu of Hong Kong blanked Joshna 9-3, 9-1, 9-2 in the women's quarter-finals at the Khalifa International Tennis and Squash Complex.
In an all-India quarter-final between Ritwik and Sourav, one had to go and it turned out to be the former, who crashed out in an hour and three minutes.
World number 44 Ritwik struggled right from the beginning against his younger compatriot, who is ranked five rungs below him.
Saurav, on the other hand, seemed to have worked out Ritwik, and the latter, the country's highest ranked player with six Professional Squash Association (PSA) Tour titles against his name, never looked intimidating.
Ritwik was slow and lost the first set 4-9. Some expected it to jolt him out of the inertia but he remained off-colour and Saurav's domination could be gauged from the 9-0 scoreline in the second set.
Pushed to the brink, Ritwik finally showed glimpses of his class and put up an improved showing with some drop shots at crucial junctures to win the third set 9-6 and keep the match alive.
The fourth set turned out to be a see-saw battle before Saurav, the first Indian ever to win the coveted British Junior Open U-19 Squash title, outran his senior compatriot to win the set 9-7 and seal the issue.
On the other hand, much was expected from world number 42 Joshna and her training in Egypt had further raised the expectations. But all came to naught today with the Chennai girl faltering against her opponent from Hong Kong.
Nimble-footed Wing dominated the T and mixed her shots well to outplay Joshna and the Indian could garner only six points in the entire match, which lasted just 17 minutes.
Doha Asian Games 2006: The Complete Coverage