It was a bittersweet day for India on the penultimate day of the Chennai Open ATP Challenger 100 tournament on Saturday.
Even as Sumit Nagal’s singles campaign ended with a straight-sets defeat to American Nicolas Moreno De Alboran in the semifinals, Arjun Khade, partnering with Britain’s Jay Clarke, gave the home crowd something to cheer for by winning the men’s doubles title.
Khade and Clarke had a relatively straightforward match in the doubles final, beating Austria’s Sebastian Ofner and Croatian Nino Serdarusic 6-0, 6-4.
In the day’s first match, Nagal had a scrappy outing as he went down 6-4, 6-2 to Alboran after squandering numerous chances.
In the opening game, Nagal had two break points before a few unforced errors, and some good first serves allowed Alboran to prevail.
Nagal struggled for accuracy in his groundstrokes and was conservative with weak first serves, allowing the American to dictate the play.
In between this, Nagal, at the same time, also produced some sensational fighting skills in the longer rallies and won some stunning points.
But despite breaking the American twice in the first set, Nagal’s poor service games cost him dearly as he lost his serve thrice.
Similarly, in the second set, Nagal lost his serve in the fourth game with four unforced errors and could never recover. Alboran will now play Australian Max Purcell, who beat compatriot Dane Sweeney, in the men’s singles final on Sunday.
Results: Singles (semifinals): Nicolas Moreno De Alboran (USA) bt Sumit Nagal 6-4, 6-2; Max Purcell (Aus) bt Dane Sweeny (Aus) 6-4, 7-6;
Doubles (finals): Jay Clarke (GBR) & Arjun Kadhe bt Sebastian Ofner (Aut) & Nino Serdarusic (Cro) 6-0, 6-4.