India No. 2 and eighth seed Karman Kaur Thandi defeated compatriot Sahaja Yamalapalli 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 at the ITF women’s $25,000 tournament at The Tennis Project in Gurugram on Tuesday.
The 24-year-old, who has a powerful game built around solid groundstrokes, came fast out of the blocks and was 6-3, 3-0 up after the first hour. But Karman’s level dipped as Sahaja grew in confidence. The latter began striking the ball fiercely and took the second set 6-4.
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In the decider, Karman got an early break and in the ninth game, after wasting three opportunities, broke her opponent again and served out the match to emerge victorious after three hours.
Karman whose best 2022 result has been at the 25K event in Chiang Rai, Thailand earlier this month, awaits either Sowjanya Bavisetti or Elena Pridankina in the next round.
In the other singles main draw matches on Tuesday, India’s Smriti Bhasin bowed out to Japan’s Saki Imamura 6-4, 2-6, 3-6, and India’s Humera Baharmus defeated compatriot Mihika Yadav. After winning the first set , Mihika was up a double break in the second set before Humera’s spirited comeback resulted in a 2-6, 7-5, 6-3 win.
Tuesday was the first day of main draw action at the 25K event at The Tennis Project. The venue will be hosting another women’s 25K event next week, and the draw for both tournaments is headlined by 2018 Asian Games bronze medallist and India No. 1 Ankita Raina.
Raina and Russian Ekaterina Yashnina were the top seeds in the doubles draw but were knocked out by Elena Pridankina of Russia and Belgian Sofia Costoulas 6-1, 2-6, [10-7] in the first round.