Raina, Sunkara post wins in ITF Women''s Futures

Aurangabad, Feb 15 (PTI) National women''s champion AnkitaRaina and wild card entrant Rishika Sunkara scored creditablethree-set wins to enter the round of last 16 in the women''ssingles at the Endurance-MSLTA ITF Womens Futures at the EMMTChere today.

In the first round matches, Ankita Raina, ranked 914 inthe women''s ranking, scored a close 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 win overqualifier Kyung Yee Chae, while the 965th ranked wildcardentrant Rishika Sunkara put out another qualifier Dutch girlDaphne Van Den Heuvel 6-4, 4-6, 6-4.

Another Indian on show today, Natasha Palha from Goa,went down to top-seeded Korean Sung Hee Han in the firstround. Sung won 6-3, 6-1. In a clash between Thai sisters,Varatchaya Wongteanchai outplayed her younger sibling Varunya6-2,6-4, while qualifier Ekaterina Tour got the better of 1154ranked Japanese Chika Terasawa 6-3,6-4.

In the best match of the day, women''s national champion17-year-old Ankita Raina, a member of the LAKSHYA Bharat Forgeprogramme, brought smiles to the sizeable Aurangabad crowdoutplaying the wily Korean Kyung-Yee Chae, once a top 300player, 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 in a match lasting nearly two hours.

Raina raced to a 6-4 win in the first set and then led4-1 and looked for the kill. Chae had different ideas mixingher forehand and unsettling the talented Indian junior playerto level scores at 4-4 and then took the second set.

The decider too looked going Chae''s way, but Ankitaclawed back hitting some fine backhand winners down the linesand reaching all the drops to move up 5-3.

Chae broke her to reduce the deficit to 5-4, but Ankitaplayed sensibly to break her older opponent and win the matchand make it to the last 16. (More) PTI VKV KRK PDS

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