Asian Games tennis: India enter medal round in three events
It was a highly successful day for India in tennis with Sania Mirza moving into the women's singles and mixed doubles semi-finals, and Somdev and Sanam Singh following suit in the men's doubles, assuring India of at least three bronze medals in the Asian Games.sports Updated: Nov 20, 2010 19:12 IST
It was a highly successful day for India in tennis with Sania Mirza moving into the women's singles and mixed doubles semi-finals, and Somdev and Sanam Singh following suit in the men's doubles, assuring India of at least three bronze medals in the Asian Games.
Somdev and Karan Rastogi also entered the men's singles quarter-finals here Saturday.
Sania, ranked 166th, dispatched second-seeded Thai Tamarine Tanasugarn 6-2, 6-3 to set up a semi-final clash with third-seeded Uzbek Akgul Amanmuradova.
Sania later combined with Vishnu Vardhan to beat fourth-seeded Chinese Taipei pair of Jung Chuang and Chu-Huan Yi 2-6, 6-4, 1-0 in one hour and 12 minutes. The fourth-seeded Indians now run into top seeded Thai Tanasugarn and Sanchai Ratiwatana.
Earlier, second-seeded Somdev hardly broke sweat during his 6-1, 6-1 win over Uzbek Vaja Uzakov in a match that lasted a mere 39 minutes. He next plays China's Ze Zhang for a place in the last four.
Somdev along with Sanam also advanced into the men's doubles semifinals with a 6-2, 6-4 victory over China's Bai Yan and Ze Zhang 6-2, 6-4. They will play South Korea's Hyun Jun Kim and Jae Cho-Soong for a place in the final.
Rastogi, too, made short work of his third round match against Chen Ti of Chinese Taipei 6-0, 6-4. He faces a tough opponent in the top seed Denis Istomin of Uzbekistan next.
In women's singles, Sania underlined her supremacy over the 33-year-old Tanasugarn with her powerful grounstrokes and court-craft. The 24-year-old Indian was strong on both the flanks and dominated in the backhand rallies. Her cross-courts returns were piercing and sent the Thai scurrying into the corners.
Sania, the Doha Asian Games silver medallist in the singles, dropped her serve in the third game of the match but broke back immediately to restore parity. She then broke Tanasugarn in the sixth game. A backhand cross-court gave her the break point and then the Thai's forehand sailed long.
The Indian held her serve to consolidate the break and then broke Tanasugarn to go up a set.
After exchanging early breaks in the second set, Sania seized the initiative with a break in the sixth game. She then served out the set and the match with an ace, her third in the match, which lasted one hour and 27 minutes.