Kush gets the better of VijayAugust 25, 2017
Kush Kumar gave a glimpse of his power game as he got the better of Vijay Kumar 11-5, 11-5, 11-8 in the men’s quarterfinals of the HCL 74th National squash championships at the Shiv Nadar University indoor complex here on Thursday.
A student of Trinity College, who is trained by US National coach Paul Assaiante, apart from Vikram Malhotra, and the only Indian to have won a junior World championship medal, Kush said that he was looking forward to the match against top seed and 11-time National champion Saurav Ghosal.
“I like the fast court. I am pretty happy and pumped up to play the semifinal,” said Kush.
Recalling that he had beaten Kush in four games two years ago, Saurav said that he would look to play well rather than worry about anything else.
Incidentally, Kush was part of the Indian team, along with Harinder Pal Sandhu, Mahesh Mangaonkar and Saurav Ghosal, that won the Asiad gold at Incheon in 2014.
Interestingly, all the four players made the semifinals here, in different ways.
Second seed Harinder Pal was in a lot of trouble after a sluggish start against Aditya Jagtap, but regained the surety of his touch to pull through in four games.
Harinder Pal will face Mahesh, who proved too good for the young left-hander Velavan Senthilkumar.
Saurav was clinical in beating the only qualifier who had won a round in the knock-out phase, Abhishek Pradhan.
In the women’s section, 14-time national champion Joshna Chinappa had to struggle to stay focused for lack of quality opposition but had no complaints as she cruised into the semifinals.
She will play Tanvi Khanna, who won back-to-back five-game thrillers against Sachika Balvani and Sunayna Kuruvilla in the morning and evening. ‘Tanvi was staring at defeat at 7-8 in the fourth game against Sunayna in the quarterfinals, but pulled ahead 11-9, 11-6 in the last two games.
The other semifinal will feature Lakshya Ragavendran and Urvashi Joshi.
Men, quarterfinals: Saurav Ghosal bt Abhishek Pradhan 11-1, 11-6, 11-3; Kush Kumar bt Vijay Kumar 11-5, 11-5, 11-8.
Mahesh Mangaonkar bt Velavan Senthilkumar 11-7, 11-4, 11-7; Harinder Pal Singh Sandhu bt Aditya Jagtap 9-11, 11-8, 11-3, 11-8.
Women, quarterfinals: Joshna Chinappa bt Ashita Pranaya Bhengra 11-5, 11-4, 11-7; Tanvi Khanna bt Sunayna Kuruvilla 8-11, 11-9, 7-11, 11-9, 11-6.
Lakshya Ragavendran bt Sachika Ingale 11-6, 11-13, 11-2, 11-9; Urvashi Joshi bt Riya Sisodia 11-0, 11-1, 11-9.
Pre-quarterfinals: Joshna bt Sanika Choudhari 11-2, 11-9, 11-4; Ashita w/o Hritika Malhotra; Tanvi bt Sachika Balvani 1-9, 11-4, 8-11, 6-11, 11-6; Sunayna bt Megha Bhatia 11-5, 11-3, 1-6.
Sachika bt Mayuri Namasivayam 11-4, 11-5, 11-7; Lakshya bt Amira Singh 11-9, 11-8, 11-6; Urvashi bt Jui Kalgutkar 11-5, 6-11, 11-5, 4-11, 11-6; Riya bt Prapti Salunkhe 11-3, 11-3, 11-7.