Ramkumar Ramanathan scored an upset win over Sumit Nagal in an exciting all India contest to enter the semifinals of the KPIT MSLTA Challenger at Pune on Friday.
In their first meeting this year at the Challenger level, 25-year-old Ramkumar, seeded sixth, notched up a 6-4, 7-6 (5) win over Indian No 2 Sumit Nagal, seeded third, in a 97-minute thriller.
Ramkumar will now take on second-seeded James Duckworth, who went through close moments to stop another Indian Sasikumar Mukund 7-5, 4-6, 7-5 in a 2 hour and 16 minute battle.
In doubles section, top seeds Purav Raja and Ramkumar Ramanathan registered a dominant 6-3, 6-4 win over Tunisia’s Aziz Dougaz and Frenchman Calvin Hemery in the quarterfinals.
In the semifinals, the Indian pair will take on fourth-seeded Brydan. Klein of Great Britian and N Vijay Sundar Prashanth of India, who easily disposed off Indian pair of Niki Poonacha and Annirudh Chandrasekar 6-2, 6-3 in another match.
It turned out to be an exciting contest between Ramkumar and Nagal as both the players held serves till 4-4 in the first set. Ramkumar broke Nagal in the 10th game to take the first set 6-4.
In the second set, Sumit was broken in the 6th game but he broke back Ramkumar in the 7th game. Sumit then held his eighth game and again broke Ramkumar to go up 5-4.
In the 10th game, Ramkumar played some classic tennis to break Sumit on the third breakpoint and level scores at 5-5.
Both Ramkumar and Sumit held serves in the next two games to level scores at 6-6 and force a tiebreak.
In the tie-break, Sumit raced off to a 3-0 lead before Ramkumar came back to level scores at 3-3. Ram played some good point at 5-4 to go up 6-4 but Nagal aced to reduce the margin to 6-5. Ramkumar then closed the match on the second matchpoint to register a big win over in-form Nagal.