Here are all the Indian sporting news of the day:
Shruti Ahlawat beat the Asian junior champion Sara Saito 6-2, 6-1, but Japan won the decisive doubles to clinch the third qualification spot in the Asia-Oceania junior Billie Jean King Cup under-16 girls tennis tournament at the DLTA Complex on Saturday.
When Australia gave a glimpse of its strength to bag the gold medal with Emerson Jones and Lily Taylor battling it out for about five hours between them to guide Australia to a 2-0 triumph over the spirited Thais. India’s inadequacies as a team, stood exposed.
It was commendable that despite its limited resources, India was able to battle the strong teams and could secure the fourth place in a field of 15 teams.
Quite remarkably, Shruti did not drop a set in singles right through her six matches. She played doubles on all days and almost pulled the team to the World Group in the semifinals against Thailand.
Dipika-Saurav duo wins India’s first gold medal at WSF World Doubles Championships
“We had the best chance against Thailand yesterday to qualify’’, said captain Archana Venkataraman, who believed that the team had better ability than what it showed through the week.
Shruti proved that she was the best player on view, but it also underlined the fact that the host was running a single horse race, with due respect to Shruti’s teammates.
The top brass of the Asian Tennis Federation (ATF) including former World No.16 Iroda Tulyaganova of Uzbekistan, were present for the medals ceremony.
Finals: Australia bt Thailand 2-0 (Emerson Jones bt Lidia Podgorichani 7-5, 1-6, 7-5; Lily Taylor bt Pimmda Thongkum 7-5, 6-4).
Third place: Japan bt India 2-1 (Mayu Crossly bt Riya Sachdeva 6-2, 6-1; Sara Saito lost to Shruti Ahlawat 2-6, 1-6; Hayu Kinoshita & Sara Saito bt Shruti & Niyati 6-1, 6-2).
Fifth place: Kazakhstan bt Hong Kong 2-0 (Karina Jumazhanova bt Jane Ling Chun Wong 6-4, 6-1; Aiya Nupbay bt Naomi Hagi 6-1, 6-1).
Seventh place: Korea bt Uzbekistan 2-1 (Seo Ah Yun lost to Shaknoza Marimova 0-6, 1-6; Son Ha Yoon bt Zlata Chinnova 3-0 (retired); Kim Ye Eun & Son Ha Yoon bt Shaknoza & Sabrina Olimonova 6-0, 6-2).
-by Kamesh Srinivasan
Manini Kaushik topped the women’s 50-metre rifle 3-position event in the fourth National shooting selection trials at the Dr. Karni Singh Range, Tughlakabad, on Saturday.
It was a consistently commendable effort from Manini as she topped qualification with 588, and stayed on top right through into the semifinals, before beating Nikita Kundu 16-14 in the last stage.
Former national champion Meena Kumari rose to the third spot, ahead of Sunidhi Chauhan, Bhakti Bhaskar Khamkar, Nupur Kumrawat, Mehuli Ghosh and Gaayathri Nithyanandam.
In the junior event, Nischal beat Ashi Chouksey 16-14 after the latter had stayed on top till that stage.
In the 10-metre air rifle event, Gajanan Shahadev Khandaghale (630.3), Vidit Jain (629.5) and Sri Karthik Sabari Raj (628.7) had topped the qualification stage in the men’s, juniors and youth sections respectively. The finals will be shot on Sunday morning.
50m rifle 3-position:
Women: 1. Manini Kaushik 16 (403.6) 588; 2. Nikita Kundu 14 (400.8) 583; 3. Meena Kumari 397.5 (582).
Juniors: 1. Nischal 16 (403.6) 576; 2. Ashi Chouksey 14 (403.5) 579; 3. Nikita Kundu 401.2 (583).
– by Kamesh Srinivasan