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Sun wins singles title

Special Correspondent

— Photo: R.V. Moorthy

At Full tilt: China’s Sun Peng was in full flow as he defeated India’s Ashutosh Singh.

NEW DELHI: Chinese Davis Cupper Sun Peng proved too good for Ashutosh Singh, as he cruised to a 6-2, 6-1 triumph in an hour, in the final of the ONGC $10,000 ITF men’s Futures tennis tournament at the DLTA Complex here on Saturday.

On a pleasant evening, Ashutosh disappointed the local fans as he could not cap a brilliant run in an appropriate fashion. He had done the hard work in keeping the Indian hopes alive when better ranked players could not even reach the quarterfinals. Yet, in the final the 24-year-old buckled under self-inflicted pressure.

No clue

Playing in his maiden singles final at this level, Ashutosh had no clue as to how to handle the situation and went for too much too early and lost his way. His attractive backhand backfired for the most part and his serve lost sting as well as accuracy.

Pitted against a quality player who looked to have reserved his best for the final, Ashutosh stuttered as he injudiciously tried to jump from the second gear to the fifth. He played well in patches and won a few rounds of applause, but that was good enough to win him only three games.

After holding serve at ease in his first two service games, dropping a solitary point in all, Ashutosh lost nine games in a row. That obviously eroded his confidence, and he was unable to bail himself out.

Classical drop volley

In the event, Ashutosh managed to win a token game at 0-5 in the second set before Sun wound up the match with a classical backhand drop volley.

It was the third Futures singles title from four finals for the 23-year-old Sun who had recently won his second title back home in China, beating fellow Davis Cupper Wang Yu jr. in the final.

The title was worth 18 ATP point and $1,300, while Ashutosh had to be content with 12 ATP points and $900.

However, Ashutosh had the consolation of winning the doubles title with Vijay Kannan. It was his fourth Futures doubles title from 10 finals.

The results (finals): Singles: Sun Peng (Chn) bt Ashutosh Singh 6-2, 6-1. Doubles: Ashutosh and Vijay Kannan bt Tushar Liberhan and Vivek Shokeen 6-1, 7-6(5).

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