Delhi ATP Challenger: Sanam out, Bhambri in doubles second round

New Delhi, Feb 17: India’s Sanam Singh was knocked out of the men’s singles opening round at the ONGC-GAIL Delhi Open while compatriot Yuki Bhambri progressed to the second round of the men’s doubles here Monday.

Sanam, who is a wildcard entrant, lost 2-6, 6-3, 4-6 to eighth seed Illya Marchenko of Ukraine in little over two hours at the Delhi Lawn Tennis Association (DLTA) complex here.

After going down meekly in the first set, the 352-ranked Indian came back strongly to win the second but too many unforced errors cost him the final set and ultimately the match.

“I started off really slow and made too many errors. I found my rhythm in the second but down a set against a quality player, it was tough to comeback. Third set was neck and neck again I was down 3-0 but I came back and had break points on every single service game of his, just could not convert chances and then played a bad last game,” Sanam said after the match.

“The court was slow, all these players have good speed and you have to work to get a win. There is no excuse, I just played bad first set and started off on the wrong foot. I can’t make a habit of that,” he added.

Bhambri teaming up with Michael Venus of New Zealand in the men’s doubles easily beat Ruan Roelofse and Izak van der Merwe 6-3, 6-3.

The Indian pair of Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan and Vishnu Vardhan too advanced to the next round with a straight-set 6-2, 6-3 win over Ruben Gonzales and Artem Sitak.

The team of Narayanaswamy Sriram Balaji and Ti Chen of Chinese Taipei were also victorious in the doubles as they beat Steven Diez and Go Soeda 7-5, 6-4.

However, there was heartbreak for the Indian duo of Ramkumar Ramanathan and Ranjeet Virali Murugesan, who lost to Matthias Bachinger and Thomas Fabbiano 6-2, 2-6, 6-10.

India’s highest ranked singles players Somdev Devvarman and Bhambri will play their first-round singles matches Tuesday.

Devvarman will take on wildcard Karunuday Singh while Bhambri will face Frenchman Lucas Pouille.

IANS