Indian sports news wrap, February 17

Catch the updates and scores of all Indians in action on February 17.

Published : Feb 17, 2023 19:29 IST

Vaidehi Chaudhari competed hard to beat Alexandra Iordache
in the ITF women’s tennis tournament in Jhajjar on Friday.
Vaidehi Chaudhari competed hard to beat Alexandra Iordache in the ITF women’s tennis tournament in Jhajjar on Friday. | Photo Credit: Kamesh Srinivasan

Vaidehi Chaudhari competed hard to beat Alexandra Iordache in the ITF women’s tennis tournament in Jhajjar on Friday. | Photo Credit: Kamesh Srinivasan


ITF women’s tournament

Second seed Vaidehi Chaudhari tamed a fighting Alexandra Iordache 6-3, 6-4 in the quarterfinals of the $15,000 ITF women’s tennis tournament at the Joygaon Academy on Friday.

On a gloomy morning, when heavy fog delayed the start by an hour, there was favourable flow for the Indian players as Sandeepti Singh Rao and Zeel Desai also made the semifinals.

Despite the fluctuating flow of the match, Vaidehi stayed gutsy and fought for every point, exasperating her firebrand opponent with a smart and sharp game, littering the court with fluent winners on both flanks.

Alexandra knew that it was a hard match as she had to negotiate 22 points on her serve in the first game, as Vaidehi converted the seventh breakpoint to make a statement. Thereafter, Vaidehi rarely let Alexandra get a grip on the contest, despite her admirable athleticism and strong strokes from every position.

It was all about converting the chances, and Vaidehi secured six of 15 breakpoints, while Alexandra managed to win three of 10 breakpoints.

The match looked to be coming back to life when Alexandra drew parity at 4-4 in the second set, but Vaidehi did not allow the Romanian to convert three game points in the tenth game and closed it out.

In the semifinals, Vaidehi will play Zeel Desai who was equally assertive in beating Fanny Ostlund of Sweden in straight sets. Zeel was in a spot of bother at 4-5 in the second set, but won the last three games in quick time, dropping only three points in all.

Sandeepti Singh Rao continued to assert her all-round game and an admirable composure to play every point with the merit it deserved, as she beat Shrivalli Bhamidipaty in straight sets.

Shrivalli had the big game, but did not have the urge to fight for every point. Thus, even when she led 4-0 in the second set, Shrivalli was unable to ride on it, and looked helplessly as Sandeepti turned the tide in her favour, to win the match 6-2, 7-6(4).

Sandeepti will challenge the champion of the last tournament, Tamara Curovic of Serbia who got past Humera Baharmus without much trouble.

Singles (quarterfinals): Sandeepti Singh Rao bt Shrivalli Bhamidipaty 6-2, 7-6(4); Tamara Curovic (Srb) bt Humera Baharmus 6-3, 6-4; Zeel Desai bt Fanny Ostlund (Swe) 6-2, 7-5; Vaidehi Chaudhari bt Alexandra Iordache (Rou) 6-3, 6-4. Doubles (semifinals): Diana Marcinkevica (Lat) & Fanny Ostlund (Swe) bt Sai Samhitha & Soha Sadiq 6-3, 6-3; Vaidehi Chaudhari & Zeel Desai bt Sharmada Balu & Marie Mettraux (Sui) 6-4, 6-3.

- Kamesh Srinivasan

AITA Championship series juniors

Arnav Bishnoi and Vanya Arora won the boys and girls under-18 titles respectively in the AITA Championship series junior tennis tournament at the CLTA Complex on Friday.

Arnav beat Sumukh Marya and Vanya beat Reet Arora in straight sets in the finals..

Reet did well to beat top seed Jasmine Kaur for the under-14 title.

The results (finals):

Boys: Under-18: Arnav Bishnoi bt Sumukh Marya 6-3, 6-2.

Under-14: Gaurish Madaan bt Sangram Bhadury 7-5, 6-4.

Girls: Under-18: Vanya Arora bt Reet Arora 6-1, 6-3.

Under-14: Reet Arora bt Jasmine Kaur 6-0, 6-3.

- Kamesh Srinivasan



 Sr National women’s hockey match

Madhya Pradesh blanked Telangana 36-0 in the league phase of the 13th Hockey India Senior national women’s hockey championship at the District Sports Authority Stadium here on Friday.

Priyanka Wankhede (8), Preeti Dubey (6), Shaheen Khan (5) and Aishwarya Chavan (5) were the main scorers for the winners.

In another match, Odisha also scored a convincing 13-0 win over Kerala with Anupa Barla (4) being the lead scorer.

The results:
Madhya Pradesh 36 (Diksha Tiwari, Nilanjali Rai, Karishma Devi 2, Preeti Dubey 6, Shaheen Khan 5, Upasana Singh, Aishwarya Chavan 5, Suman Devi Thoudam, Priyanka Wankhede 8, Manmeet Kaur 2, Yogita Bora 2, Anjali Gautam 2) bt Telangana 0.
Odisha 13 (Anupa Barla 4, Punam Barla 2, Namita Toppa 2, Janhabi Pradhan, Jiwan Kishori Toppo, Lilima Minz, Dipti Lakra, Asmita Barla) bt Kerala 0.
Himachal 10 (Kanshika Rai, Ritu 4, Tannu 4, Gurpreet Kaur) bt Gujarat 1 (Prachi Patel)


Bopanna enters Rotterdam doubles semi

Rohan Bopanna and Matthew Ebden outplayed the fourth seeds Lloyd Glasspool and Harri Heliovaara 6-2, 6-1 in the doubles quarterfinals of the $2,224,460 ATP tennis tournament in Rotterdam, Holland, on Friday.

In the semifinals, Bopanna and Ebden will play Kevin Krawietz and Tim Puetz of Germany.

The results
$2,224,460 ATP, Rotterdam, Netherlands
Doubles (quarterfinals): Rohan Bopanna & Matthew Ebden (Aus) bt Lloyd Glasspool (GBR) & Harri Heliovaara (Fin) 6-2, 6-1.
$60,000 ITF women, Altenkirchen, Germany
Doubles (quarterfinals): Jessy Rompies (Ina) & Prarthana Thombare bt Noma Noha Akugue & Ella Seidel (Ger) 6-3, 6-4.
$15,000 ITF men, Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt
Singles (quarterfinals): Simone Roncali (Ita) bt SD Prajwal Dev 6-1, 6-7(0), 6-3.
Doubles (semifinals): SD Prajwal Dev & Sai Karteek Reddy Ganta bt Gabriele Bosio & Filippo Speziali (Ita) 6-4, 7-6(5).
$15,000 ITF women, Ipoh, Malaysia
Doubles (semifinals): Yu-Yun Li (Tpe) & Anastasiya Poplavska (Ukr) bt Aoi Ito (Jpn) & Ashmitha Easwaramurthi 7-6(6), 7-5.



Kerala’s semifinal hopes rise after win over Odisha

After struggling for a major part of the 76th Santosh Trophy National football championships’ final phase, defending champion Kerala defeated host Odisha 1-0 in Bhubaneswar on Friday and is now in with a chance to travel to Riyadh to play the semifinals.

Nijo Gilbert (No. 7), who scored Kerala’s match-winner against host Odisha, celebrates with his teammate V. Arjun in the Santosh Trophy National football championship in Bhubaneswar on Friday.
Nijo Gilbert (No. 7), who scored Kerala’s match-winner against host Odisha, celebrates with his teammate V. Arjun in the Santosh Trophy National football championship in Bhubaneswar on Friday. | Photo Credit: AIFF

Nijo Gilbert (No. 7), who scored Kerala’s match-winner against host Odisha, celebrates with his teammate V. Arjun in the Santosh Trophy National football championship in Bhubaneswar on Friday. | Photo Credit: AIFF

Nijo Gilbert scored Kerala’s match-winner with a 16 th-minute penalty.

Meanwhile Punjab, which leads the six-team Group ‘A’ with 10 points, brushed aside Goa 3-1 while Karnataka drew with Maharashtra 3-3, a result which has now offered hope to Kerala.

Karnataka is second in the group with eight points while Kerala has seven and the final set of matches on Sunday will decide the two semifinalists from the group.

The results

(Group A): Kerala 1 (Nijo Gilbert 16-p) bt Odisha 0.

Karnataka 3 (Robin Yadav 45+4-p, P. Ankith 61, Shajan Franklin 9+11) drew with Maharashtra 3 (Johnson Mathews 14, Armash Ansari 55 & 60).

Punjab 3 (Nickson Castanha 20-og, Rohit Sheikh 74 & 80) bt Goa 1 (Clencio Pinto 88).

-Stan Rayan


Aditi maintains brilliant run, leads world No. 1 Lydia Ko by two shots

India’s Aditi Ashok continued her brilliant run as she added a 6-under 66 in the second round to move to 13-under and a two-shot lead over world No. 1 Lydia Ko in the Aramco Saudi Ladies International here on Friday.

Aditi, who in the last two weeks had won in Kenya and finished third in Morocco, is leading a star-studded field at the USD 5 million event on the Ladies European Tour.

Starting on the tenth tee, Aditi was in excellent form as she found five birdies and an eagle on the back nine of the Royal Green Golf Club to score 7-under 29 on the stretch.

Getting to the front nine, Aditi, who was bogey free on the first day, bogeyed the first and sixth and was on 12-under when she holed a final birdie to move to 13-under and two clear of Lydia, who had earlier finished the day at 3-under 69 to get to 12-under and be tied second with American Lilia Vu (66).

Aditi, a four-time LET winner, who ended a long winless streak two weeks ago in Kenya, divides her time between Ladies European Tour and LPGA. She has begun the 2023 season with three events on the LET and already has a win and third place in those starts.

Focusing on a strong off-season preparation, she has been reaping rich rewards for her work. She used the two months between the two seasons to work and practice.

Aditi said, “I think two months off and practicing a lot compared to how much I would’ve practiced if I was in season has helped with the start to the year.

“I have played here three times before, I know the golf course a little bit, and maybe that familiarity helps me feel comfortable here.” After the first day, when she shot 65, she said, ‘I think early on I hit a couple bad drives, but I managed to save par on those holes. I knew it was one of those days, that even if you don’t hit a good shot things were working out for me today, so glad I was able to capitalise on that.” Swiss golfer Albane Valenzuela (66) was fourth, while Gaby Lopez (69) and Emily Kristine Pedersen (67) were tied fifth.


Gandas makes first cut, Rafa leads in Thailand

Indian golfer Manu Gandas matched the six birdies in the first round with another six in the second to ensure his first cut in his DP World Tour career as a full member.

Gandas, who missed the cut in Ras Al Khaimah and Singapore, added 69 to his first round 71 and at 4-under he was tied 42nd.

Rafa Cabrera Bello will take a two-stroke lead into the weekend at the Thailand Classic after carding a second round seven under par 65.

The Spaniard, whose last victory came in 2021 at the acciona Open de España, carded seven birdies on his final 10 holes to move two strokes clear of Paraguayan Fabrizio Zanotti at Amata Spring Country Club.

Among those sharing third on 10 under are Japan’s Kazuki Higa, who carded the low round of the day, an eight under par 64, and 2018 Ryder Cup player Thorbjørn Olesen.

Gandas who started early from the first tee birdied the first and second and added a third on seventh. A double bogey on the eighth set him back but a birdie on the ninth saw him turn in 2-under.

On the back nine, back to back birdies on 11th and 12th helped him despite a bogey on 13th. He parred the last five.

The 2016 Ryder Cup player, Cabrera-Bello, started his day with birdies on the 11th and 12th holes, but undid his work after finding the water at the island green par three 17th hole, carding a double bogey.

He recovered immediately with three consecutive birdies and then made four in a row from the fifth hole as he signed for a 13 under par total.

Zanotti, who won his last DP World Tour title in South East Asia at the 2017 Maybank Championship, carded a five under par round of 65 to move to 11 under, one stroke clear of six golfers.


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