Balaji and Vishnu win doubles title in Samarkand Challenger

Vishnu Vardhan and Sriram Balaji got a walkover from the pair of Mikhail Elgin and Denis Istomin.

Photo of Vishnu Vardhan and Sriram Balaji who won the doubles title in the $75,000 Challenger tennis tournament in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, on Saturday.   -  Special Arrangement

Top seeds Sriram Balaji and Vishnu Vardhan clinched the doubles title in the $75,000 Challenger tennis tournament in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, on Saturday.

The Indian pair got a walkover in the final from Mikhail Elgin and Denis Istomin who had incidentally beaten the other Indian pair of Saketh Myneni and Vijay Sundar Prashanth in the quarterfinals.

Earlier in the day, Balaji and Vishnu had beaten fourth seeds Timur Khabibulin and Vladyslav Manafov. The Indian pair, which had won the Chennai Challenger this season, did not drop a set in clinching the
doubles trophy.

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"We should get into the Wimbledon qualifying event with the new ranking. So, we come home to get the visa done and play events in UK leading up to Wimbledon’’, said Balaji.

Balaji and Vishnu had won nine titles last season, including three Challengers, and have been diligently training to make the Grand Slam stage.

In the $25,000 ITF women’s event in China, Rutuja Bhosale was beaten in straight sets by Yue Yuan of China in the semifinals.

The results:

$75,000Challenger men Samarkand, Uzbekistan

Doubles (final): Sriram Balaji & Vishnu Vardhan w.o. Mikhail Elgin (Rus) & Denis Istomin (Kaz); Semifinals: Sriram Balaji & Vishnu Vardhan bt Timur Khabibulin (Kaz) & Vladyslav Manafov (Ukr) 7-6(1),
6-3.

$25,000 ITF women, Wuhan, China

Singles (semifinals): Yue Yuan (Chn) bt Rutuja Bhosale 6-4, 6-4.