Sheethal upsets Isha to enter ITF tournament quartersSeptember 16th, 2009 - 10:11 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Sep 16 (IANS) Bangalore’s Sheethal Goutham fought back from a set down to beat fourth-seeded Isha Lakhani 4-6, 6-4, 6-2 and enter the quarter-finals of the $10,000 International Tennis Federation (ITF) tournament at the DLTA stadium here Wednesday.
Sheethal next plays seventh-seeded Sanaa Bhambri who beat Germany’s Jasmin Steinherr 6-4, 6-3.
Top seed Poojashree Venkatesha overcame initial onslaught from Japanese Moe Kawatoko to win 7-6(1), 6-0. She now plays sixth-seeded Israeli Karen Shlomo who beat Slovakian Dalila Jakupovic 6-3, 6-1.
In the other pre-quartefinal matches, eight-seeded Rushmi Chakravarthi beat France’s Elodie Rogge-Dietrich 6-1, 6-2. Rusmi will meet compatriot Shivika Burman who beat Rishika Sunkara 6-4, 7-5.
It was Isha’s first ever loss in her six meeting with 28-year-old Sheethal, who is making a comeback on the circuit after three years. In fact, it was only last month that Isha had beaten the Banglorean in straight sets.
But Sheethal hung on this day. Isha’s compounding errors also made it easier for Sheethal to claw her way back after she lost the first set, being broken in the ninth game.
She broke Isha in the first game of the second set to take a 3-0 lead, only to drop her serve in the fifth game. Sheethal then broke Isha in the tenth game, when the latter hit a forehand long, to make it a set apiece.
Isha got off to a solid start in the third set, breaking Sheethal in the first game. But Isha squandered the advantage by dropping her serve in the fourth game, hitting a backhand crosscourt wide, and again in the sixth game when her forehand sailed long. Anger got the better of her as she slammed her racquet several times to vent out her frustration.
Isha, though, had a slim chance to even out things when Sheethal was down two break points in the next game but that was not to be. She was then broken at love in the eighth game to give the set and match to Sheethal.
“I really needed that win,” Sheethal said. “I cut down on my errors in the second set and just kept up with her.”
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Tags: backhand, break points, burman, compatriot, dalila, eighth game, fifth game, first game, goutham, initial onslaught, international tennis federation, isha lakhani, rogge, sanaa bhambri, shlomo, sixth game, slim chance, straight sets, tenth game, win 7