Nagal advances to Main Draw of Tata Open Maharashtra
~ The 20-year-old Indian will face fellow qualifier Belarus' Ilya Ivashka ~
~ Ricardo Ojeda Lara & Thiago Monteiro also make it through to the main event ~
Pune, December 31, 2017: The second round of the Men's Singles qualifiers of the Tata Open Maharashtra took place here today at the Mhalunge Balewadi Stadium, Pune with Ilya Ivashka, Ricardo Ojeda Lara, Sumit Nagal and Thiago Monteiro all booking a place in the Main Draw of the tournament.
In one of the most anticipated matches of the day, India's Sumit Nagal beat Spain's Adrian Menendez-Maceiras in a nip-and-tuck encounter which finished 6-2, 3-6, 6-4 in the Indian's favour. The match saw world no. 223 Nagal start on the front foot as he looked in good touch. However, Menendez-Maceiras bounced back in the second set to take the match into the decider. In the third set, both players produced a fight but it was the 20-year-old youngster from India who crossed the finish line.
The win for the 20-year-old Nagal means that he will be playing fellow qualifier Ilya Ivashka in the first round of the tournament starting on January 1, 2018. Speaking after making his way through to the Main Draw, Nagal seemed confident of performing well against the player from Belarus. "I am very happy to have qualified for the main draw of the Tata Open Maharashtra and I am looking forward to my first round match against Ivashka. It will be an interesting tie but I am confident that I can do well against him and advance to the latter stages of the tournament," said Nagal.
Ivashka made it through to the Main Draw after beating Spain's Carlos Taberner in straight sets 6-3, 6-2, in a match which lasted just over an hour. The 23-year-old Belarusian utilised his serve to great effect hitting 12 aces , seven of which came in the first set itself. The second set saw a similar story as the Spaniard failed to make good returns allowing Ivashka to run away with a straight sets win.
Ricardo Ojeda Lara produced his best tennis to beat Brazil's Joao Souza in straight sets 6-3, 6-4. The match saw Spaniard play some consistent tennis to knock out the 29-year old Brazilian. However, it was due to the Spaniard's consistent play in both the sets that even an experienced player like Souza failed to make an impact.
In the fourth and final game of the day, it was Brazil's Thiago Monteiro who beat Prajnesh Gunneswaran from India in straight sets 7-5, 7-5. Gunneswaran started the match brightly and looked set to win the first set, but Monteiro's speed meant that the Indian lost the match in straight sets giving the Brazilian a place into the Main Draw of the Tata Open Maharashtra.
RESULTS - DECEMBER 31, 2017