Indian challenge in singles ends in ATP Challeger

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New Delhi, Nov 27 (UNI) Indian challenge in the singles ended at the ATP Challenger tennis tournament here as the trio of Rohan Bopanna, Karan Rastogi and Harsh Mankad lost their first round matches today.

Bopanna squandered a set advantage to lose 6-3, 5-7, 3-6 to second seed Russian Igory Kunitsyn.

Bopanna gave a jolt to the Russian by taking the first set 6-3 but could not go for the kill. He lost a see-saw second set 5-7 and in the decider ran out of steam to lose 3-6.

Karan Rastogi was far below his best and lost 6-3, 6-3 without much fight to Wesley Moddie of South Africa.

Wild card Harsh Mankad also faced the same fate as he lost to Alberto Francis of United States 6-4, 7-5.

Yesterday, Tushar Liberhan, Prajnesh Gunneswaran, Sunil Kumar Sipaeya and Navdeep Singh had made first round exits in singles from the 50,000 dollar hard court event.

In doubles also Indians had a forgettable day with only Bopanna and Mustafa Ghouse surviving the first round.

Seeded second in the tournament, Bopanna and his Pakistani partner Aisam Qureshi beat Indo-Philippine pair of Stephen Amritraj and Cecil Mamiit 6-2, 6-4 while fourth seeds Ghouse and Patrick Briaud of United States beat Alberto Francis (USA) and Dieter Kindlmann 6-1, 6-4.

Three other Indian pairs, Divij Sharan and Navdeep Singh, Raja Purav and Sunil Kumar Sipaeya and Vijay Kannan and Vivek Shokeen -- all wild cards -- crashed out in the first round.


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