ITF Tennis: Prerna Bhambri in last 8
Pune: Prerna Bhambri kept the Indian flag flying by making it to the singles quarter-finals of the NECC-ITF women’s $25,000 event at the Deccan Gymkhana here Wednesday while qualifiers Rika Fujiwara from Japan and Israel’s Keren Shlomo also made it to the last eight.
On a day when three out of four Indians in singles action were sent packing, Delhi girl Bhambri played some flawless tennis against an erratic Peangtarn Plipuech of Thailand while winning 6-4, 6-0.
Plipuech’s only glory came in the fifth game of the first set when she broke Bhambri who promptly broke back and then again in the 10th to win the set 6-4.
The second set was one-sided as Bhambri didn’t drop a single game on her way to a quarter-final clash against Kazakhstan’s Kamila Kerimbayeva.
Japan’s Fujiwara, champion in this event in 2009, had a easy day as her sixth seed opponent, Oksana Kalashnikova of Georgia, conceded the match trailing 0-3 in the first set due to a wrist injury and Shlomo continued her good run with a 6-3, 6-2 win over Japan’s Miyabi Inoue.
Mumbai girl Snehadevi Reddy had no answer to the power of Thailand’s Nungnadda Wanasuk, losing 1-6, 0-6. Sowjanya Bavisetti, another qualifier who had made it to the second round, was outplayed 6-2, 6-2 by top seed Magda Linette.
Sharmada Balu, another Indian qualifier, was defeated by third seed Diana Marcinkevica of Latvia 6-4, 6-0.
Balu-Bavisetti ended the day on a better note though, as they paired up to beat fourth seeds Tamara Curovic/Diana Marcinkevica 6-7 (1), 6-3, 10-8 in the doubles quarter-finals.