India’s top ranked paddler Achanta Sharath Kamal produced a stunning performance against world No 16 Patrick Franziska to make his way into the last-16 stage at the WTT Star Contender Doha on Tuesday.
The veteran came through a thrilling match 12-10, 3-11, 11-7, 7-11, 11-9 win over the German athlete in the men’s singles second round match.
In a hard-fought five-setter tie, the seasoned campaigner from India began the battle with a 1-0 lead before the German Franziska saw making a comeback to level the scores. Third and fourth game also saw equal domination from both the players as they took the match into the fifth set.
However, the nine-time senior national champion and world No 32 kept his calm in the crucial decider and got the better of Franziska to wrap up the match in his favour.
Sharath will now face world No 10 German Dimitrij Ovtcharov in the pre-quarterfinals on Wednesday.
In the first round Sharath beat Brian Afanador after a slugish start. The Indian recovered well to gain the required momentum and gave no further chance to his opponent before sealing the match 8-11, 11-8, 11-7, 11-1 against the Puerto Rican.
Meanwhile, other Indians in action Sathiyan Gnanasekaran and Manika Batra lost their respective second round matches. World No 63 Batra fell short 7-11, 6-11, 7-11 against Japan’s Mima Ito, who is ranked third in the world. Sathiyan, who overcame a strained shoulder in his win in the first round, could not go past the Japanese sensation and world No 5 Tomokazu Harimoto. The Indian lost 4-11, 5-11, 8-11.
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