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Batra wins title after gruelling duel

sports Updated: Oct 21, 2012 00:16 IST
Sharmistha Chaudhuri
Sharmistha Chaudhuri
Hindustan Times
Garvit Batra

Having patiently waited for 205 minutes, the audience heaved a sigh of relief.

Beating cramps, which had been bothering him since the start of the decider, Garvit Batra took home the Fenesta Open boys' under-16 title on Saturday afternoon. The 15-year-old defeated good friend Shashank Nautiyal 7-5, 4-6, 6-2 at the DLTA complex.

Playing after a two-month break, it was visible that Batra wasn't going all out. Not being too adventurous in case the shoulder started acting up again. But, after a tough first set, which could have also gone Nautiyal's way had he not made unforced errors at crucial junctures, it would have only been logical to try and finish the match at the earliest.

"I got nervous," admitted Batra, who choked during the second set despite starting confidently. His 16-year-old opponent grabbed the chance, and what should have been a relatively easy outing was really stretched.

As the decider began, so did the cramps. Both on court were affected, and the winner's trophy ultimately depended upon who would be able to bare the pain and not give up. Batra managed to hold on till the end and waited for Nautiyal to commit the error.

Pranjala Yadlapalli, the 13-year-old who had won the U-18 title the previous week, was unable to manage a double as top-seeded Snehadevi Reddy triumphed in the girls' under-16 category 2-6, 6-4, 6-1.

Final results (all singles): boys' U-16: Garvit Batra bt Shashank Nautiyal 7-5, 4-6, 6-2; girls' U-16: S Snehadevi Reddy bt Pranjala Yadlapalli 2-6, 6-4, 6-1; boys' U-14: BR Nikshep bt Sanil Jagtiani 6-1, 6-0; girls' U-14: Vanshika Sawhney bt Mihika Yadav 6-4, 7-6 (4)

Del Potro reaches austria open final
Vienna: Juan Martin del Potro reached his second consecutive final at the Austrian Open on Saturday as he defeated Gilles Muller 7-6 (7/4), 7-6 (7/5) in a duel of aces. The top-seeded Argenti-ne is now up against the winner from second seed Janko Tipsare-vic or Slovenian qualifier Grega Zemlja. Both Del Potro and Tipsarevic are duelling for one of three - possibly four if injured Rafael Nadal does not play - vacant spots at next month's season-ending World Tour Finals in London.

(With AFP inputs)