Indian campaign at the 22nd Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Open squash tournament came to an early end after Ritwik Bhattacharya and Saurav Ghosal bowed out in the first round of the USD 120,000 event.
Ghosal and Ritwik, who did well to qualify for the main draw, could not get past their higher ranked opponents in the prestigious Super Series tournament.
While Ghosal lost 4-11 3-11 4-11 to reigning world champion and third seed David Palmer of Australia, Ritwik went down fighting 6-11 11-6 11-9 8-11 5-11 to world number 18 and 14th seed Adrian Grant of England in close to an hour-long contest.
Ritwik's match was a thrilling affair as he was in striking distance of scoring the most memorable win of his career but the Indian lost the plot in the fourth game where he and Grant were tied 8-8 before the Englishman came out trumps.
The decider was dominated by Grant and he dug from his experience to run out a 11-5 winner to advance to the second round.
Ritwik, although disappointed with the early exit, was pleased with his overall performance in the event.
"I am delighted with my performance. I enjoyed this match and I am pleased with the strokes that I displayed. I could have done with some more consistency towards the end though," the 28-year-old told PTI from Hong Kong.
"I am really looking forward to the hard work that lies ahead. I am much more relaxed after my surgery and I think that it is giving my game a new dimension," he added.