Doha, March 9: Indian paddler Achanta Sharath Kamal produced a stunning performance to register a 12-10, 3-11, 11-7, 7-11, 11-9 win over World No.16 Patrick Franziska in the men’s singles second-round match at the World Table Tennis (WTT) Star Contender Doha on Tuesday.
In a hard-fought five-setter tie, the seasoned campaigner and World No. 32 Sharath began the battle with a 1-0 lead before the German made a comeback to level the scores.
The third and fourth games also saw equal domination from both the players as they took the match into the fifth set. However, the nine-time senior national champion kept his calm in the crucial decider and got the better of Franziska to wrap up the match in his favour. The Indian has made his way into the last-16 stage with the thrilling victory.
Sharath will now face the winner of the match between Egypt’s Ahmed Saleh and German Dimitrij Ovtcharov in the pre-quarterfinals on Wednesday. Meanwhile, other Indians Gnanasekaran Sathiyan and Manika Batra couldn’t manage to progress further after suffering defeats in their respective singles second-round matches.
While World No. 63 Batra fell short 7-11, 6-11, 7-11 against Japan’s Mima Ito, who is ranked third in the world, Sathiyan couldn’t manage to succeed against the Japanese sensation and World No. 5 Tomokazu Harimoto and suffered a 4-11, 5-11, 8-11 loss.
Earlier in the first qualifying round of men’s singles, Anthony Amalraj suffered a 6-11, 11-9, 3-11, 7-11 defeat against Mizuki Oikawa of Japan while Harmeet Desai lost to Ukraine’s Yevhen Pryshchepa with 10-12, 9-11, 11-13, 9-11 scoreline.
While in the women’s singles qualifiers, Sutirtha Mukherjee and Ahyika Mukherjee couldn’t progress into the third round. Sutirtha lost the hard-fought match 11-9, 11-6, 5-11, 9-11, 9-11 to Hayeong Kim of Korea and Ayhika suffered a 5-11, 11-13, 7-11 loss against Irina Ciobanu of Romania.
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