Kolkata: India's top tennis ace Somdev Devvarman crashed out in the first round of the Emami Kolkata Open at the Bengal Tennis Association Complex here Tuesday.
Somdev Devvarman. Pic/AFP
Tamil Nadu's Ramkumar Ramanathan, who has been training in Barcelona for the last three years, clinched the encounter 4-6, 6-3, 6-4, which lasted for two hours and 19 minutes at the hard courts here.
Ramanthan dropped the opening set in 46 minutes. In the eighth game of the first set and at 3-4 on serve, Devvarman struggled to save two break points and made it 4-4.
In the very next game Ramanathan was broken, thereby giving his opponent a lead of 5-4, which Somdev consolidated by holding on to his serve.
In the second set, Ramanathan took a quick lead of 3-0, Devvarman made it 1-3 but ultimately lost the set 3-6 in a span of 41 minutes.
In the deciding set, it was a treat for the tennis lovers as the Tamil Nadu talent came back from 1-4 down with sheer determination and a "refuse to give up" attitude.
After playing 14 points in the sixth game including a close line call going against him, Ramanathan succeeded to hold his serve, making it 4-2 in favour of his rival. With two consecutive immensely powerful return of serves, Ramanathan managed to comeback in the match.
At 5-4 and on serve, Ramanathan was down by 15-40 when he came back to deuce the score. Here Ramanathan saved two break points to gain a game point as well as the match point, Ramanathan served for the match to clinch the game 6-4.
Australian fifth seed Luke Saville fought hard before going down against last year's quarterfinalist Ti Chen of Taipei 3-6, 6-3, 2-6.
Wild card entrant and 18-year-old, Haryana's Sumit Nagal, currently training in Germany, went down against World No.261 Egor Gerasimov from Belarus. Gerasimov won by a close 7-5,7-5 to enter the pre-quarterfinals.
World No.297 Yuki Bhambri had it easy against Spain's Enrique Lopez Perez ranked little higher at 224, as the former won by a convincing 6-2, 6-2 margin.
In doubles, Somdev ultimately earned a reason to smile as he partnered with Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan to upset the third seeded duo of Saketh Myneni and Sanam Singh by a nail-biting 2-6, 6-2(10-5).