Ankita Raina gave local fans something to cheer about after becoming the first Indian to make it to the singles second round of a 125K WTA event at the Mumbai Open on Wednesday.

The wildcard entrant notched a 7-6 (2), 6-3 win over world No 233 Veronika Kudermetova in an up-and-down match that lasted for an hour and 36 minutes.

While the Indian dominated for most part of the match, the Russian, ranked 60 places above, gave her a tough fight till the end, saving several set points and two match points.

The only Indian left in the singles draw, Raina started with the strong hold, broke her opponent in the next two games and raced to a 4-0 lead.

The pumped-up player, cheered by the applauding crowd, looked set to increase her lead but the Russian began to find her rhythm and broke Raina in the fifth game.

While the Indian broke right back to lead 5-1, she went on a downward slide losing four straight games, getting broken twice while serving for the set.

She called her coach Hemant Bendre on court and that seemed to help her get the bite back in her game. On Tuesday, she had spoken to TheField about the importance of a travelling coach and the difference in her game could be seen.

The set was further levelled at 6-6, putting pressure on the attacking Raina. The tie breaker, though, was completely different as Raina took the initiative early and showed off her intent giving her opponent only two points.

The first two games of the second set were straightforward holds but the third was the game of the match – it saw six deuces and dragged on with neither player giving an inch. But Raina broke her opponent in the fifth game and that finally turned the tide of the match.

Kudermetova broke back in the sixth game and held on to make it 4-3 but Raina’s powerful winners made sure that the second set would be wrapped up soon.

She held to love, got two match points on the Russian’s serve and despite the game going to deuce, she converted her third match point to become only the second active Indian singles player to win a round of a 125K WTA event.