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Saurav Ghosal handles Hindle well

Amitabha Das Sharma

KOLKATA: The highest ranked Indian in the world, Saurav Ghosal, tempered early diffidence to get past Bradley Hindle of Malta 12-10, 12-10, 11-2 and ensure a quarterfinal berth in the $35,000 PSA Kolkata international squash tournament here on Thursday.

Ghosal, ranked No. 24 in the world, struggled initially as Hindle started aggressively and gave his higher-ranked opponent a tough time on court. Ghosal had to fight hard for every point as Hindle, ranked 71, won a few good rallies with a clever mix of shots.

The first two games saw the trend continuing as Ghosal gave away the advantage with his opponent putting a hot chase. Fourth-seeded Ghosal, up 9-7 at one stage, was undone by some brilliant drop shots as Hindle took the first game to 10-10. Proving that he has mastered the finish for the big points, Ghosal won successive points to take the game 12-10.

Hindle, who trains in Australia, stepped up the aggression in the second game and led Ghosal 7-5 before the latter turned things around bettering his court coverage.

Winning five successive points, Ghosal quickly reached game point at 10-7 but Hindle came back again to level the scores. Displaying good touch and temperament the Indian again prevailed in the decisive stage and won the last two points to take a 2-0 advantage.

With Ghosal returning stronger in every game Hindle seemed to give up in the third, which Ghosal won easily 11-2 to end the duel in 49 minutes. Ghosal will take on the reigning world junior champion Amr Khaled Khalifa of Egypt in the quarterfinals. The other Indian in the main draw, Siddarth Suchde, crashed out in the first round, losing to sixth-seeded Egyptian Karim Abdel Gawad.

World No. 3 and top-seeded Karim Darwish of Egypt virtually toyed with his first round opponent — world No. 98 Clinton Leeuw of South Africa — before accomplishing a facile win in just 30 minutes.

The results: First round: Karim Darwish (Egy) bt Clinton Leeuw (RSA) 11-5, 11-1, 11-5; Mohammad Ali Anwar Reda (Egy) bt Jorge Isaac Ferreira (Mex) 11-9, 11-5, 11-9; Amr Khaled Khalifa (Egy) bt Ivan Yuen (Mas) 7-11, 11-9, 11-6, 11-5; Saurav Ghosal (Ind) bt Bradley Hindle (Mlt) 12-10, 12-10, 11-2; Ong Beng Hee (Mas) bt Andrew Waigh Shoukry (Egy) 8-11, 11-2, 11-6, 2-11, 11-7; Karim Abdel Gawad (Egy) bt Siddharth Suchde (Ind) 11-9, 5-11, 11-5, 11-7; Robbie Temple (Eng) bt Muhd Asyraf Azan (Mas) 11-9, 11-8, 11-13, 11-6; Omar Mosaad (Egy) bt Cesar Salazar (Mex) 11-9, 6-11, 11-8, 13-11 .

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