Monday, Jun 16, 2003
Front Page |
Southern States |
Other States |
Advts: Classifieds | Employment | Obituary |
By Kamesh Srinivasan
Yes, the Satellite tennis circuit has gained momentum considerably, as the third leg kicks off at the DLTA Complex here on Monday.
Prakash Amritraj has taken the pole position as the seedings for the third week are made on the basis of the performances of the first two weeks.
The champion of the second leg and the semifinalist of the first week, the 19-year-old Prakash, is brimming with confidence. He is here not only to gain maximum ATP points from the circuit but also to show that he would be a good choice for the country in the prestigious Davis Cup competition.
Though brought up in the US, by a doting father Vijay Amritraj, Prakash enjoys playing in India. So far, he has done well to assert himself, and it will be interesting to see how well he faces the challenge, as everyone would be keen to beat him. Prakash will start against a qualifier.
Vijay Kannan has done well to retain his third seeding. He goes about his business quietly and is biding his time. He will be up against the talented teenager from Chandigarh, wildcard Chatwinder Singh in the first round.
Mustafa Ghouse has been having a decent fare so far. The fifth seed will start against a qualifier, and if he wins, will have another qualifier in the second round. A player of considerable potential, Mustafa has not been able to live up to his standards, though he has started playing a lot better than before. Sixth-seeded Vinod Sridhar is a wily customer, and will be pitted against Stephen Amritraj, who himself has been improving with every outing in this circuit.
The eighth seed Rohan Gajjar had done well to make the semifinals back home in Mumbai in the first leg. He was unlucky to meet the same opponent, Prima Simpatiaji of Indonesia who had beaten him in Mumbai, in the first round in Chandigarh. Out here on a holiday from the U.S., Gajjar would only be too pleased with gaining the ATP points. He will play Parantap Chaturvedi in the opening encounter.
Sunil Kumar, who had the honour of being the No.1 seed in the first two legs, will have to work his way this time. The talented left-hander, perhaps going through the toughest phase in his career, will play Eliran Dooyev of Israel in the first round.
Local lad Vishaal Uppal will be taking on the big-serving Yew-Ming Si of Malaysia. Vishaal's progress had apparently been hampered by a sore shoulder, but with better quality balls in use here, he should be able to spring a surprise.
Second-seeded Daniel Kiernan of Britain, who had won the first leg, fourth-seeded Prima Simpatiaji and seventh-seeded Febi Widhiyanto of Indonesia are some of the other players who are capable of upsetting the Indian plans. Ajay Ramaswami, Takeshi Itoh of Japan and Richard Crabtree of Britain are also in the fray.
For many, who may think it as a good circuit for the Indians, it should be brought to light that Kamala Kannan lost in the second qualifying round on Sunday, and the National grasscourt champion Manoj Mahadevan will be up against Tobias Huelsen of Germany in the final qualifying round tomorrow for a place in the main draw.
Jaco Mathew, with three circuit points and a chance to qualify for the Masters, lost in the second qualifying round to Wrik Ganguly 6-7 (4-7), 6-3, 5-7. He deserved a wild card, and may not make the Masters now.
Overall, it should be interesting to see how the equations work, before the Masters event scheduled to be held at the same venue the following week.
With the circuit points getting converted into ATP points at the end of four weeks, every win counts towards your improvement on the ATP ladder. So, there are no easy matches, and no easy opponents.
The matches would be played at 8 a.m. and 4.30 p.m.
The seedings list: 1. Prakash Amritraj, 2. Daniel Kiernan (GBR), 3. Vijay Kannan, 4. Prima Simpatiaji, 5. Mustafa Ghouse, 6. Vinod Sridhar, 7. Febi Widhiyanto (Ina) and 8. Rohan Gajjar.
The results (qualifying event): Second round: Anuwat Dalodom (Tha) bt Janosch Blaha (Ger) 6-2, 2-6, 6-4; Aditya Madkekar bt Amod Wakalkar 3-6, 6-4, 6-4; Sanchai Ratiwatana (Tha) bt Yohan Samawi (Ina) 6-3, 6-1; Ling Lu (Hkg) bt Ashwin Sivaramakrishnan 6-0, 6-1; Brian Hung (Hkg) bt Kamala Kannan 6-3, 6-2; Arjun Talwar bt Saurabh Kohli 0-6, 7-6 (10-8), 6-4; Wrik Ganguly bt Jaco Mathew 7-6 (7-4), 3-6, 7-5; Punna Vishal bt J. Vishnu Vardhan 6-4, 6-3; Kedar Tembe bt Ritesh Chitlangiya 6-3, 6-2; Moti Maaravi bt Anjan Viplav 6-4, 6-7 (3-7), 6-3; Hlu Tung Yu (Hkg) bt Vijayendra Laad 6-2, 6-0; Hendri-Susilo Pramono (Ina) bt Siddharth Gulati 6-4, 6-2; Katsushi Fukuda (Jpn) bt Sandeep Choudhary 6-2, 6-2; Arjun Goutham bt Ashutosh Singh 3-6, 6-4, 6-0; Manoj Mahadevan bt Ajai Selvaraj 6-4, 6-1; Tobias Huelsen (Ger) bt Abedin Sham 2-6, 4-1 (retd).
The Hindu Group: Home | About Us | Copyright | Archives | Contacts | Subscription
Group Sites: The Hindu | Business Line | The Sportstar | Frontline | The Hindu eBooks | Home |
Copyright © 2003, The
Hindu. Republication or redissemination of the contents of
this screen are expressly prohibited without the written consent of