Bengaluru, Feb 18 (IANS) Juggling time spent in school and tennis courts, Shivaraj Chandan has been a story of hard work and perseverance. On Thursday, his hard work paid off when he sent second seed Vivaan Gupta packing in straight sets in semifinals to reach the finals of the AITA under-16 tennis tournament. The 16-year-old boy won 6-1, 7-5.
Earlier in the day, Chandan, a 10th standard student of Annie Besant School, had slayed third seed Jason Michael David 6-3, 6-2 in quarterfinals at the Palace Grounds. Chandan now takes on No.4 seed Rethin Pranav in the title clash after the latter too recorded a minor upset by beating top seed Mandeep Reddy 6-0, 6-2 in the other semifinal.
In the girls under-16 category, Vanya Srivastav thrashed third seed Gagana Mohankumar 6-4, 6-0 to enter the final where she will clash with fourth seed Amodini Vijay Nayak, who defeated Sushmitha Ravi 6-1, 6-2 in semifnals.
With the win in the quarterfinals having boosted his confidence, Chandan showed superb application across the court and won six games in a row to take the first set 6-1. Gupta showed some sort of resilience in the second set despite being 0-2 down early in the set and levelling at 3-3. He then lost his serve, only to be broken back by Chandan, after which both held their serves until Chandan went 6-5 up and broke his rival’s serve to win the set and the match.
Results (seedings prefixed):
Boys under-16 semifinals: 4-Rethin Pranav bt 1-Mandeep Reddy 6-0, 6-2; Shivaraj Chandan bt 2-Vivaan Gupta 6-1, 7-5
Quarterfinals: 1-Mandeep Reddy bt Dhruva Adiga 6-3, 6-2; 4-Rethin Pranav bt Sehaj Singh 6-1, 6-1; Shivaraj Chandan bt 3-Jason Michael David 6-3, 6-2; 2-Vivaan Gupta bt Rakshak Tarun 1-6, 6-4, 7-6 (3)
Girls under-16 semifinals: Vanya Srivastav bt 3-Gagana Mohankumar 6-4, 6-0; 4-Amodini Vijay Nayak bt Sushmitha Ravi 6-1, 6-2
Quarterfinals: Vanya Srivastav bt Sree Tanvi Dasari 6-2, 4-6, 6-4; 3-Gagana Mohankumar bt 7-Kajal Ramisetty 6-2, 6-4; 4-Amodini Vijay Nayak bt 6-Harshini Nagaraj 6-2, 6-2; Sushmitha Ravi bt 2-Siri Manjunath Patil 6-4, 6-7 (3), 6-4