Shuttler Karishma Wadkar excited to qualify for Tata Open
City shuttler Karishma Wadkar is glad to have made her maiden entry into the main draw of the sixth edition of USD 15,000 Tata Open India International Challenge at the Cricket Club of India's badminton courts yesterday.
In the qualifying round, Karishma, the India No 1 in the U-17 category beat Santoshi Hasini 21-18, 21-15. She will play against India’s Jacqueline Rose Kunnath today.
Karishma had a comfortable lead of 16-5 in the first game, but Santoshi fought back to make 15-16. Thereon Karishma hit some cross-court smashes to win the first game 21-18.
In the second game, the 16-year-old started winning points and was 11-5 when her opponent won the next four points. Later Karishma clawed back to make it 20-14 and eventually won 21-15.
“The junior Asian Badminton Championships this year was my first international tournament. But making it to the main draw of a senior event and that too in my hometown is special.
“This being my first tournament in the senior category, I am not aware of the competition level. I would just go there and give my best. I hope to garner as much experience playing against senior players from India and abroad,” Karishma told MiD DAY.
The FYJC student of Mithibai College battled a hamstring tear last year but it was her coach Mangirish Palekar of Shuttlecraze Academy who helped her get back into the game.
“I had a third grade hamstring tear two years ago. I couldn’t have made a comeback without the guidance of Mangirish sir. He is been really supportive and ensured that I do not hurt myself further while playing.
He devised a special training programme for me which helped a lot,” said the Santacruz resident. Meanwhile, the other city shuttlers to make it to the main draw were Harsheel Dani and Nigel D’Sa.