Sandhu retains squash title

Last Updated: May 14, 2011, 23:46 PM IST

Mumbai: Defending men`s champion Harinderpal Singh Sandhu of Tamil Nadu retained his title, while Saumya Karki earned another double for the second time in succession, in the Rs 8 lakh Otters Open Squash tournament on Saturday.

Top seed Sandhu overcame third seed Mahesh Mangaonkar of Mumbai 11-9, 6-11, 11-7, 11-6 in an exciting final that lasted 80 minutes.

Meanwhile, Saumya defeated Shria Khatri 11-6, 13-11, 11-5 to continue her successive run.

Favourite Sandhu endured a stiff challenge from underdog Mangaonkar, who has just made the transition to the senior category after being a top junior with significant international exposure.

CCI lad Mangaonkar, the 2009 under-15 British Open champion, ran Sandhu close in the opening game for a promising start. He revealed his potential for future glory by snatching the second set and impressing with a 7-4 lead in the third before Sandhu crawled back to take the game and match away.

"It wasn’t an easy match. Mahesh played really well and gave me a tough time in the first two sets. Of course he is just joined the seniors ranks but he showed he has great potential. I’ve gone through the same phase," said Sandhu after the match.

Top seed and defending champion Saumya Karki retained the Women’s and under-17 titles in a repeat of last year’s effort.

Second seed Kush Kumar upset top seed Deepak Mishra for the boys under-17 title in an all-Tamil Nadu final, while favourite Aishwarya Bhattacharya of Jindal Squash Academy won the the girls under-13 and under-15 titles for a deserving double.

PTI