Sharmada to face Zeel, Poonacha to meet Digvijay in finals of Fenesta Open Nationals
New Delhi, October 29, 2021
Qualifier Sharmada Balu created another big upset as she stunned second seed Vaidehi Chaudhari 6-4, 6-3 to set up a title clash with top seed Zeel Desai in the women's singles event of the Fenesta Open National Tennis Championship at DLTA here on Friday.
In the other semi-final, Zeel Desai brushed aside Samhitha Sai Chamarthi 6-2, 6-2.
In the men's singles, top seed Nikki K Poonacha had to battle it out against fourth seed Paras Dahiya before emerging winner 6-1, 5-7, 7-5 to make it to the final. In the summit clash, he will take on Digvijay Pratap Singh who beat 3rd seed Nitin Kumar Sinha 6-1, 5-7, 7-5.
In the women's section, Sharmada showed the willingness to grind it out first in the qualifiers and then displayed strength and stamina to go the full distance.
"I think I played really good today. My opponent was no pushover but my game was in place. I am happy to pull off this win and will give it my best shot in the final on Saturday," said Sharmada.
Zeel faced no resistance from Samhitha, as she dropped just four games in her semi-final win. “Today I was playing a senior opponent so I had to play a much more mature game. She was more experienced than me, so I played maturely and I was patient on the court. I went through it and am looking forward to the final," said the top seed.
In the men's semi-final, Poonacha had to dig deep to bring his best game into play against Paras Dahiya for a win in three sets in a match where both the players showed tenacity and good temperament.
“It was a tough game, I was up 5-4 in the second set but I couldn’t use my serve well I think and I lost the game. Even in the second-set tie-breaker, I had some challenges but missed. My focus was on the third set, so I started good and I kept increasing the pressure. From there on, it was easy," Nikki said
Earlier in the first semi-final, Digvijay Pratap Singh had to wage a tough battle against seasoned campaigner Nitin Kumar Sinha. Digvijay showed variety and vibrance as he outslugged Nitin. The long match was a test of skills, patience, and energy levels as well.
“It was again a long grind today like yesterday’s match. I won the first set easily but then I struggled to finish it in the second. But just like before, I managed to keep my calm and finally managed to get the win," said Digvijay.
In the Men's Doubles final, Prajwal S D Dev/ Nikki K Poonacha beat Chandril Sood/ Lakshit Sood 6-2, 7-6(3). “It was a good game, we were in control most of the times, we were up 6-2, 3-0 and then it came 3 all and then we went down 6-5, we had to pull it back and we played a very solid tie break, so happy for the win and winning the nationals is a big thing. Even they played too good tennis,” said the winners.
In the Women's Doubles final, Sharmada Balu/ Sravya Shivani Chilakalapudi beat Vaidehi Chaudhari/ Mihika Yadav 6-2, 6-3. “We are super excited, it’s our first nationals together. We played a good match today and we pulled through, we coordinated well and gave it our best and it worked out. We are extremely excited and it’s Fenesta, one of the favorite tournaments of the year,” said the winning duo.
Nikki K Poonacha (seed 1) bt Paras Dahiya (seed 4) 6-3, 6-7 (7), 6-1; Digvijay Pratap Singh bt Nitin Kumar Sinha (seed 3) 6-1, 5-7, 7-5
Zeel Desai (seed 1) bt Samhitha Sai Chamarthi (seed 4) 6-2, 6-2; Sharmada Balu bt Vaidehi Chaudhari (seed 2) 6-4, 6-3
Womens Doubles Finals:
Sharmada Balu/ Sravya Shivani Chilakalapudi (seed 3) bt Vaidehi Chaudhari/ Mihika Yadav 6-2, 6-3
Mens Doubles Finals
Prajwal S D Dev/ Nikki K Poonacha (seed1) bt Chandril Sood/ Lakshit Sood 6-2, 7-6(3)