HCL PSA Challenger: Third-seed Akanksha beats Kuruvilla to reach semis

Third seed Akanksha Salunkhe was at her fighting best to beat Sunayna Kuruvilla 11-9, 11-7, 7-11, 9-11, 11-7 in the women’s quarterfinals of the HCL PSA Challenger squash tournament.

Sunayna Kuruvilla and Akanksha Salunkhe in the quarterfinals of the PSA Challenger squash tournament in Jodhpur on Saturday.

Sunayna Kuruvilla and Akanksha Salunkhe in the quarterfinals of the PSA Challenger squash tournament in Jodhpur on Saturday. | Photo Credit: Kamesh Srinivasan

Third seed Akanksha Salunkhe was at her fighting best to beat Sunayna Kuruvilla 11-9, 11-7, 7-11, 9-11, 11-7 in the women’s quarterfinals of the HCL PSA Challenger squash tournament.

Third seed Akanksha Salunkhe was at her fighting best to beat Sunayna Kuruvilla 11-9, 11-7, 7-11, 9-11, 11-7 in the women’s quarterfinals of the HCL PSA Challenger squash tournament at the Umaid Bhawan Palace on Saturday.

In a gripping contest, Sunayna literally lost her grip on the last two shots in losing the climax. The gritty Akanksha will challenge the top seed Aira Azman of Malaysia in the semifinals.

Fourth seed Tanvi Khanna went down fighting 12-14, 8-11, 10-12, 7-11 after a keen tussle against eighth seed Amina Orfi of Egypt

In the men’s section, Velavan Senthilkumar, a former Asian and British junior champion, was in good touch as he cruised past third seed

Darren Rahul Pragasam of Malaysia 11-3, 11-0, 12-10. In the semifinals, Velavan will challenge the top seed Zahed Salem of Egypt, a former top-20 player trying to get back into the big league.

The results (quarterfinal)
Men: Zahed Salem (Egy) bt Abdelrahman Abdelkhalek (Egy) 12-10, 11-2, 11-2; Velavan Senthilkumar bt Darren Rahul Pragasan (Mas) 11-3, 11-0, 12-10; Ong Sai Hung (Mas) bt Mohammad Nasser (Egy) 11-3, 4-11, 11-5, 11-2;
Women: Aira Azman (Mas) bt Ching Hai Fung (Hkg) 11-2, 11-9, 11-8; Akanksha Salunkhe bt Sunayna Kuruvilla 11-9, 11-7, 7-11, 9-11, 11-7; Amina Orfi (Egy) bt Tanvi Khanna 12-14, 11-8, 12-10, 11-7; Cheng Nga Ching (Hkg) bt Nour Khafagy (Egy) 5-11, 11-6, 8-11, 11-5, 11-9.
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