New Delhi: The young duo of Soumyajit Ghosh and Harmeet Desai on Friday became the first Indian paddlers to reach the men`s doubles quarterfinals of a Super Series tournament as they entered the last-eight of the Japan Open at Yokohama.
Ace paddler Achantha Sharath Kamal (68) has entered the pre-quarterfinals of the singles` event while Soumyajit Ghosh (170) crashed out of the round of 32 after making his debut appearance in the second round of a Super Series event.
In the men`s doubles, Ghosh and Desai defeated Swedish duo of Kristain Karlsson and Mattias Karlsson 11-8 2-11 11-6 9-11 11-9 in an intense pre-quarterfinal battle.
The Indians will now run into the Japanese pair of Jin Ueda and Maharu Yoshimura in the quarterfinals tomorrow.
If the Indian pair manages to clear this hurdle, they will earn a minimum of USD 1000 in prize money.
Both Ghosh and Desai began with a good lead to take the first game but lost out as quickly in the second before going 2-1 up against the Swedish players. But the latter were up to the task and managed to level the score to take it to the decider.
In the decider, too, the Indians ran up a good lead, but their opponents matched them before Ghosh completing with a scorching winner.
Earlier in the men`s singles, Sharath Kamal got the better off Taipei`s Chia-Sheng Lee 7-11 20-18 5-11 11-8 11-6 11-2 to set up a clash against Liqin Wang of China tomorrow.
In the other match, Ghosh, who had upset Maharu Yoshimura (49) in a seven game duel, lost to Chien-An Chen of Taipei 11-9 3-11 12-14 4-11 4-11 to exit from the second round.
Anthony Amalraj, however, lost his singles battle in the main draw to Singapore`s Li Hu in straight games.
Meanwhile, Ghosh surprisingly failed to qualify for the U-21 boys event as he went down to Hampus Soderlund of Sweden. The loss cost Ghosh his entry from Group 5 as only the top two players in the group qualifying for the main draw.
Though both Tonin Ryuzai (Japan) and Soderlun had managed as many points as Ghosh did, five points each, the draw was decided on the ratio of games won and lost. Unfortunately, Ghosh finished behind the two players in the group.
Harmeet Desai also failed to make it to the main draw despite having played some good matches.