Top seed Gaurav Nandrajog and Mandy Kennedy of England fashioned contrasting victories to clinch the men's and women's titles respectively, in the 31st HSBC-Bombay Gymkhana Maharashtra State Open Squash Championships, co-sponsored by Westside and Lee, at the Bombay Gymkhana on Friday.
Nandrajog ignored the loss of the first two games to rally to a thrilling 2-9, 7-9, 10-8, 9-0, 9-2 victory over Harinderpal Singh in an all-Chennai final that lasted an hour and 11 minutes.
After trailing 0-2, Nandrajog was on the verge of crashing to a second consecutive defeat to Harinderpal, following last week's semi-final loss at the CCI-Western India Open.
He squandered a 2-7 lead in the second game to allow his talented opponent to rest on a comfortable cushion, but then put behind the blemish to race to a 7-2 lead in the third.
But Harinderpal again threatened to take the game and match after storming back to level at 8-8 and force the game into extra points. Nandrajog's powerful strokes though proved decisive and kept his hopes alive.
Harinderpal surprisingly threw away the crucial fourth in a bid to reserve his best for the last. But Nandrajog used his experience to surge to a comfortable 7-2 lead in the decider before sealing the game and match with immense relief.
In contrast, Mandy Kennedy overcame Shivangi Paranjpe of Maharashtra 7-9, 9-4, 9-6, 9-4 for her second title in Mumbai, following her win over Shivangi in the Otters Open.
Vikram Malhotra was denied a double after bagging the boys' under-17 title and losing out in the boys' under-19 final.
Malhotra beat Chennai's Cyril Kuhn 3-0 in the under-17 final, before going down 1-3 to arch-rival Sandeep Jangra in the under-19 championship round.
Ankita Sharma added her second successive title following an impressive 6-9, 5-9, 9-6, 9-4, 9-1 victory over Soumya Karki in the girls' under-15 final, after ending a two-year drought last week with the CCI-Western India Open crown.
Men's Open: Gaurav Nandrajog (Chennai) bt Harinderpal Singh (Chennai) 2-9,7-9, 10-8, 9-0, 9-2.
Women: Mandy Kennedy (England) bt Shivangi Paranjpe (Mah) 7-9, 9-4, 9-6, 9-4.
Boys' Under-19: Sandeep Jangra (Mah) bt Vikram Malhotra (Mah) 9-1, 9-7, 7-9, 9-4.
Boys' Under-17: Vikram Malhotra (Mah) bt Cyril Kuhn 9-0, 9-2, 9-2.
Boys' Under-15: Aadit Zaveri (Mah) bt Abhishek Pradhan (Mah) 9-0, 9-3, 9-0.
Boys' U-13: Mahesh Mangaonkar (Mah) bt Shashi Pandey (Jindal) 9-3, 9-1, 9-2.
Boys' Under-11: Raghav Mehrotra (Mah) bt Yohan Pandole (Mah) 9-3, 9-7, 9-5.
Girls' Under-19: Shivangi Paranjpe (Mah) bt Madhura Paranjpe (Mah) 9-1, 9-1, 9-1.
Girls' Under-17: Shaheda Madraswala (Mah) bt Namrata Purohit (Mah) 9-1, 9-7, 9-5.
Girls' Under-15: Ankita Sharma (Mah) bt Soumya Karki (Mah) 6-9, 5-9, 9-6, 9-4, 9-1.
Girls' Under-13: Soumya Karki (Jindal) bt Sachika Balvani (Mah) 9-5, 2-9, 9-6, 10-9.
Under-9: Rajat Agarwal (Mah) bt Sandeep Paswan (Jindal) 9-6, 9-2, 9-3.
Over-35: Manish Chotrani (Mah) bt Jehangir Surti (Mah) 9-0, 9-0, 9-0.
Over-45: Chandrakant Pawar (Mah) bt Anant More (Mah) 9-4, 9-5, 4-9, 10-8.
Over-55: Kishanlal Passi (Mah) bt Haresh Melwani (Mah) 9-6, 9-1, 9-4.
Professionals: Dalip Tripathi bt Mahesh Verma (Mah) 9-1, 9-2, 9-1.