Chennai Open Challenger: Balaji-Vardhan pair lifts title

The Indian duo of N. Sriram Balaji and Vishnu Vardhan fought off a stiff challenge from Cem Ilkel and Danilo Petrovic to win the Chennai Open Challenger men’s doubles title. The second-seeded Indians were stretched to the limit in their 7-6 (5), 6-7 (5), 10-5 win on Friday.

Balaji and Vardhan got off to a flyer as they took a 3-0 lead but their unseeded opponents came back in remarkable fashion to stage a five game win-streak and go up 5-3.   -  R. Ragu

The Indian duo of N. Sriram Balaji and Vishnu Vardhan fought off a stiff challenge from Cem Ilkel and Danilo Petrovic to win the Chennai Open Challenger men’s doubles title. The second-seeded Indians were stretched to the limit in their 7-6 (5), 6-7 (5), 10-5 win on Friday.

Balaji and Vardhan got off to a flyer as they took a 3-0 lead but their unseeded opponents came back in remarkable fashion to stage a five game win-streak and go up 5-3. The Indians managed to scour their way back into the tie and broke the in tenth game and held serve in the next to force a tie-break, which they went on to comfortably win.

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Much the like the first set, the second seeds were up 2-0 in the second set but the Turkish-Serbian pair staged a comeback again and combined effectively to take the set 7-5. The match headed to a deciding super tie-break, with the set scorecard reading one set apiece

With the title and 80 ranking points at stake, the Indian pair played its best tennis of the match over the next 15 points. They leaped to an 8-3 lead in quick time and sealed the clash off their first match point. Vardhan sent out huge serve and Petrovic's meek lob found Balaji at the net and his booming smash earned the duo its fourth title.

Doubles final result: N. Sriram Balaji and Vishnu Vardhan bt. Cem Ilkel (TUR) and Danilo Petrovic (SRB) 7-6 (5), 5-7, 10-5.