PUNE: Karman Kaur Thandi kept it simple and played an attacking game right from the start to oust Mahak Jain 6-2, 6-4 in the first round of the $25,000 NECC-ITF Women’s Tennis tournament at Deccan Gymkhana here on Monday.
“I enjoy playing an attacking game and it is my style so I did the same today. I have played here before as well so I know how courts plays. It was a good game to start the tournament,” said Karman Kaur Thandi to Sakal Times.
Smashing the ball with ferocious speed from game one, Delhi girl Karman broke Mahak in the first game itself and held her serve in the second game to take a 2-0 lead.
Indore girl Mahak took some time before holding her serve in the third game to make it 2-1.
Taking advantage of her height seeded No 7, Karman hit half volley shots on regular basis to keep wildcard entrant Mahak on the backfoot.
“She (Karman) is a better player and she played really well today,” said Mahak Jain, who was a wildcard in the tournament.
Mahak, who started on a slow note, tried to match Karman’s speed and manged to hit a few winners but it did not make much difference for Karman, as she clinched first set 6-2 in 23 minutes.
Karman, who is ranked 285th, much higher than Mahak (749th) started the second set by breaking Mahak again in the first game.
Mahak raised the bar of her game and gave a tough fight to Karman to make it 3-all, breaking Karman in the 6th game.
Karman came back strongly and took the seventh game 40-love to move ahead 4-3. From there onwards, Karman kept on playing cross courts forehand winners and also hit aces to stay ahead in the match.
Few unforced errors in between helped Mahak to win the 9th game but the Delhi girl held her serve in the 10th game to wrap up the set 6-4 and complete the victory in an hour and 3 minutes.
Earlier in the day wildcard Ria Bhatia who did not looked completely fit right from the start became the first Indian to exit when Kaja Juvan of Slovenia won 6-0, 6-4 as the Indian committed nine double faults though the match handing the Slovenian upperhand.
Also moving into the second round was No 4 seed Katy Bunne of Britain who defeated Nagi Hanatani of Japan 6-3, 6-1 with ease and No 5 seed Ganna Poznikhirenko of Ukraine winning 6-4, 6-0 over Panna Udvardy of Hungary.
Another Ukranian in the top half of the draw, Anastasiya Vasylyeva exactly matched the scores of her countrymate in beating Russia’s Marina Melnikova 6-4, 6-0 with ease.
Russians had a bad day in office as Olesya Pervushina lost to Kazakhstan’s Gozal Ainitdinova in the longest match of the first day.
Gozal needed just one hour and 49 minutes to score an victory over Olesya 7-6 (13-11), 6-4 as the Russian committed seven double faults as compared to two by Gozal.
4-Katy Dunne (Gbr) bt Nagi Hanatani (Jpn) 6-3, 6-1; 5-Ganna Poznikhirenko (Ukr) bt Panna Udvardy (Hun) 6-4, 6-0; Anastasiya Vasylyeva (Ukr) bt Marina Melnikova (Rus) 6-4, 6-0; Kaja Juvan (Slo) bt Riya Bhatia (Ind) 6-0, 6-4; 7-Karman Kaur Thandi (Ind) bt Mahak Jain (Ind) 6-2, 6-4; Estelle Cascino (Fra) bt Ho Ching Wu (Hkg) 6-7 (7-0), 6-4, 6-2; Gozal Ainitdinova (Kaz) bt Olesya Pervushina (Rus) 7-6 (13-11), 6-4.
First round: Dhruthi Tatachar Venugopal (Ind) and Ekaterina Yashina (Rus) bt Zeel DESAI (Ind) and Pranjala Yadlapalli (Ind) 1-1, retired; 4-Olga Doroshina (Rus) andAnna Morgina (Rus) bt Fatma Al Nabhani (Oma) and Jia-Jing Lu (Chn) 6-2, 5-7, 10-8; Jessy Rompies (Ina) and Varunya Wongteanchai (Tha) bt Katy Dunne (Gbr) and Sarah Beth Grey (Gbr) 6-4, 3-6, 10-5; 2-Ankita Raina (Ind) and Emily Webley-Smith (Gbr) bt Dea Herdzelas (Bih) and Ksenia Palkina (Kgz) 6-2, 6-7 (5-7), 10-3.