April 17: Indian sports news wrap of the day

April 17 Daily Sports Wrap: India's grouping in the Asia-Oceania World Junior tennis under-14 girls tournament, National Selection Trials for shooting, and more in todays wrap.

The India WJT team. (From left: Namita Bal (C), Sai Janvi, Sohini Mohanty, Aishwarya Jadhav)   -  Kamesh Srinivasan

TENNIS

India has been seeded sixth and clubbed with fourth seed Korea, Hong Kong and Singapore in the Asia-Oceania World Junior tennis under-14 girls tournament to be played at the DLTA Complex from Monday.

After the memorable performance of the under-16 boys who qualified in style with the gold last week, and the close miss of the girls under-16 team earlier when it placed fourth, there will be some expectations with the current team.

Captain Namita Bal expressed confidence that the team would play to potential, even though some of the assembled teams were pretty strong.

Like the under-16 boys team, in which Bushan Haobam was brought into the squad following trials, after the original team nomination, a similar system was followed in strengthening the under-14 girls team.

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"Sai Janvi is good and plays doubles very well. She comes in place of Thaniya Sarai Gokulamanda, who has been kept as a reserve and will stay with the team’’, said Namita.

The idea is to have a best shot at qualification, and the team management took the players and their parents into confidence in advance to spell out the strategy.

The Aussies and Japanese will continue to be hot shots. Australia has particularly been superbly served by the Jones family. Emerson Jones helped the under-16 girls team qualify as the champion. She is the spearhead for Australia in the under-14 team as well. To top it, her brother Hayden Jones was the live wire who helped Australia under-16 boys team qualify as the third best from the zone.

The Indian under-16 boys did lose to Australia in the league, but had the last laugh, winning the crown with a majestic fare. For sure, they lend plenty of inspiration to the younger teams.

The top two teams from each of the four groups will qualify for the quarterfinals.

The groups:

  • Group-A: Australia, Sri Lanka, Lebanon.
  • Group-B: Japan, Malaysia, Thailand.
  • Group-C: Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore, India.
  • Group-D: Uzbekistan, Iran, Nepal, Kazakhstan.

- Kamesh Srinivasan

SHOOTING

Mehuli Ghosh beat former world No.1 Elavenil Valarivan 16-8 to top the women’s air rifle event in the fourth National shooting selection trials at the Dr. Karni Singh Range, Tughlakabad, on Sunday.

After qualifying in the sixth place with 629.4 in a strong field of 480 shooters, Mehuli was unstoppable in the semifinals and finals.

Nancy placed fourth ahead of Vinita Bhardwaj, Meghana Sajjanar, Kashika Pradhan, qualification topper Ayushi Podder and Riya Yadav.

Nancy was remarkable in placing among the top three in all the three events. She was second in the juniors behind Tilottama Sen and finished No.1 in the youth event ahead of Ramita and Tilottama.

The results: 10m air rifle:

Women: 1. Mehuli Ghosh 16 (262.8) 629.4; 2. Elavenil Valarivan 8 (261.5) 629.9; 3. Nancy 260.0 (630.2).

Juniors: 1. Tilottama Sen 17 (261.2) 627.5; 2. Nancy 7 (263.0) 630.2; 3. Riya Gupta 261.1 (628.5).

Youth: 1. Nancy 16 (261.2) 630.2; 2. Ramita 10 (261.3) 628.4; 3. Tilottama Sen 261.2 (627.5).

- Kamesh Srinivasan

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