Mankad qualifies for Wimbledon doubles main draw

London: Harsh Mankad entered the main draw of a Grand Slam for the first time in his career when he qualified for the doubles event of the Wimbledon along with Ilija Bozoljac.

Mankad and his Serbian partner, seeded eighth, edged past the Austrian-German pair of Alexander Peya and Bjorn Phau 7-6(5), 6-4 in the second and final qualifying round last night.

With his qualification, the 30-year-old Mankad ensured that India will have at least four players competing in the doubles event.

Indian participation may grow if Somdev Devvaraman also qualifies. He and Philippines` Treat Huey Conard are a step away from booking their berth in the main draw.

Leander Paes, Mahesh Bhupathi and Rohan Bopanna will have a direct entry, courtesy their superior ranking along with their respective partners.

Mankad has defied a career-threatening knee injury and lack of positive results in singles since making a comeback to grow as a doubles player.


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