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Sharath Kamal in pre-quarters

July 01, 2006 18:27 IST

Achanta Sharath Kamal advanced to the pre-quarterfinals of the Chile Open with a fighting 4-3 win over Portugal's Tiago Apolonia in the men's singles table tennis competition.

Sharath, seeded 19th, was made to sweat by Tiago but he held his nerve to pull off a thrilling 8-11, 11-5, 7-11, 11-4, 12-10, 4-11, 11-8 victory in Santiago on Friday.

The Chennai paddler, who became the first Indian to reach the semifinals of a pro-tour event at the Brazil Open last week, faces a tough task against world number 21 Petr Korbel of Czech Republic in the last 16.

He had started his campaign with a convincing 11-5, 11-4, 11-5, 11-5 win over Hungary's David Zombori in the first round.

Sharath is lone Indian left in the event as none of his compatriots could advance beyond the second round.

National Champion Subhajit Saha bowed out after losing to Robert Gardos of Australia 11-5, 11-7, 11-6, 12-10 in the second round.

After coming through the qualification rounds, he had carved out a fine 11-8, 11-7, 11-8, 11-6 win over Augusto Morales of Chile in the first round but failed to show the same zeal against Gardos.

Soumyadeep Roy exited in the first round after an 11-4, 11-3, 11-7, 11-8 loss to Marek Klasek of Czech Republic.

In the women's singles, both Poulomi Ghatak and Kasturi Chakravarthy, who had to qualify for the main draw, lost their first round matches.

Ghatak lost 7-11, 11-7, 5-11, 5-11, 5-11 to Wang Yu of Italy while Kasturi was tamed by Hee Lee Eun of Korea 5-11, 2-11, 8-11, 1-11.

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